Thursday, April 26, 2012

Can I tell you a story??

Let's go way way way back. I'm a skinny blonde eight year old at a tiny little gym in rural south dakota. I was on beam, and my coach assigned me to working on leaps. For those of you who have never been in gymnastics- the goal of a leap is to reach a 180+ degree split while in the air above a 4 inch wide beam. Let me tell you, that's a scary thing to do. If your foot comes down even an inch off, you end up "splitting the beam"...which is exactly what it sounds like and hurts like a mofo. So I'm a scared little 8 year old doing wimpy little leaps. It's not that I didn't have the flexibility or technique to do a better leap. And my leaps were alright so my coaches didn't push me to try any more. So I'm doing these pathetic little leaps over and over again, accomplishing absolutely nothing, when I mess up my landing and split the beam. I get up after the fall, in tears from the pain, scared to get back on the beam, and mad at myself for falling. Then I realized one of the most important things I have ever realized in my life. I realized, I'm going to fall on these little leaps occasionally, it's inevitable. I decided, if I'm going to fall anyway, why am I doing these tiny little leaps?? So I got back on the beam and from that point on, I stopped letting my fear hold me back. Yeah, I fell sometimes and yeah it scared me. But because of that, I became one of the best beam workers in the state, eventually earning honors on the regional and national level. I think I've let myself forget that lesson for awhile now, but I'm ready to embrace it again. You shouldn't do anything if you're not going to put your best effort into it, without fear.

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