Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Life Lessons

Yesterday in the weight room one of my training partners looks at me and says out of the blue, ”Isn’t it weird that you thought you might not even be able to compete this year?” Yes, weird. But also…inspiring. A quick look back through the archives (one of the benefits of blogging, I might add) shows just how unsure I was about this season and my ability to make anything out of it. I was literally taking a gamble, and hoping I could just find a way for my body to hold up and allow me to compete. Jump or Sprint? Either one was fine with me, although I was told sprinting would be the easiest with my current problems. Jump off the right leg or left leg? I've been jumping off the same leg for 15 years, and figured it might be difficult to switch, but I was willing to give anything a try. So jumping it was, off the opposite leg no less, because God is funny like that.

I think that is why this season is so special for me. It’s not just the idea of making a team or doing well so far and in the weeks to come…it’s the doing so in spite of the odds against me. And certainly not in the way of proving people wrong who didn’t think I was capable of doing much and should just move on, because that never is my motivation, but continuing to believe when I had plenty of very good reasons not to. In that sense, I feel like I inspire myself in some small way. (Is that even possible?) And this is not giving myself some huge pat on the back, because I will always give glory, honor, and credit where it’s due. God gets it all, it’s merely my job to point out how awesome He is and what a good job He’s doing.

But the cool thing about sports, and something I will definitely make use of when it’s time to convince someone to hire me, is that the life lessons you learn are profound and the character traits you build are immeasurable. Yes, I’m participating in a sport, but I’m also molding my character and figuring out what I’m made of. And sure, life is going to teach you that regardless, but sometimes I feel like I’ve been on the fast track. I have always been a confident person but I’ve had to really test that assurance and self-belief over the years, as well as learn how to build it back up. (Which is no easy task, let me tell you.) But when I do look back and see all the low points, it makes me that much more grateful for the high ones. It’s at those forks in the road when you make important decisions and continue to add to you. I look at the me I am now, and compare it with the me I was 10 years ago, and see such a huge difference. Ok, sure, there was going to be differences simply by growing up and disregarding fashion trends that are no longer trendy. But there are still things I can link directly to Track and Field. What I understand about perseverance… how to be resilient… the importance of confidence that does not change simply because of a bad performance… understanding what it means to really want something… knowing what you are willing to sacrifice achieve it… believing in yourself even when you might be the only one who truly does… goal setting… setting new goals once you achieve those ones… desire… living your life so that you have no regrets… understanding that the journey is sometimes far more important than the destination… I could go on and on. But I do know this: when I look back on my life and see the person I am, there will be much that I attribute to these years. It’s inevitable.


Wayne said...

Wow. Nothing else needs to be said except God Bless in Berlin.

free dating guy said...

Great post and good luck in berlin!

Bianca said...

Yay for success! I'm SO proud of you and I have to admit that I feel like Job's friends who might of well just cursed him. But despite my logic and desire to see you just be happy, I encouraged you to take the path much traveled instead of believing you could thrive on the path less traveled.


j buck said...

"...I will always give credit where its due."

You haven't thanked me yet!

Anonymous said...

well wish i could say i was wrong but i of all people was right and i'll gladly take credit for calling you out on not stopping and keep pushing--sure your best friends in the world supported you but i was the one to figure out that in ur greatest moment of despair the laws of the universe were on ur side! Honestly i'mnot looking for credit here i just want to say to you--you deserve this moment--this great leap of faith-pun intended-your choices to move on with your life were limited you and i know this God wasn't gonna let you get out of finishing the dream you started so long ago--and your journey won't be done in berlin nor london--you are gods instrument for the benefit of others who will walk behind you--the life you have lived and lessons learned are invaluable but ur lessons ain't over--what am i jibbering about? when you teach you will learn--look for the signs---joe p. vegas/dc

Hercules said...

You've put in the work this past year, great job! Quote from LeRoy T. Walker's "An Olympic Journey", "For instance, the theory that for every action there is an opposite and equal action is the whole basis for jumping. Another applicable law is that once something is started in a direction, unless another force intervenes, it will continue in the same direction."

Show them who's best, you're the best!