I’ve had a lot of thoughts I’ve been wanting to write lately. Actually doing that hasn’t really happened. I’ve been neglectful, silent, and truthfully… overwhelmed and quite often feeling as if I’m drowning in life’s waters instead of being refreshed by them. To be completely honest, as much as I want to appear that I have answers, and brilliant ideas, and cool new hacks for life… I don’t. I have more questions than answers, and a lot of what I do is really just flying by the seat of my pants.
Something happened the other day, and I really wanted to share it. I’m not sure why, other than perhaps to let you know it’s OK to not be great, or even good, and that people are amazing.
I have been doing CrossFit for a couple of months now. Long enough to get an idea of what I’m doing, but not long enough to really feel like a CrossFitter. I certainly don’t look like one. I’m still slow, and clumsy, and (comparatively) weak. I’m somewhere between still being a level 1 beginner, and level 2. Combine with that, I’ve noticed some pretty wicked pain in my left hip that’s causing me to not perform at my awesomest.
In addition to already modifying the workout to my current limitation, I found the level 2 workout incredibly difficult. So much so that I was sweating, and panting, and begging the Universe to just make it end. I had half a dozen team mates rocking it out and finished while I’m still struggling to throw 45 pounds over my head twelve times consecutively. I didn’t even have to do the squats and I was dying. One by one my team mates finished while I had rounds left. My coach was supportive, encouraging me to push through, don’t stop.
Sweaty, suffocating, and now I realize that my t-shirt has slid up exposing the belly I am always so conscious to hide. I couldn’t put the bar down or I’d have penalty reps. I started feeling sorry for myself and all I wanted at that moment was to cry.
As my teammates finished their rounds, they chimed in to the coach’s supportive cheers. I wanted to stop, and they’re yelling “one more! OK good! Keep pushing! One more!”
I hated that they saw me angry, and sad, and exposed, and weak, and I wanted to cry. I soon realized that every time they yelled “Come on! You can do it!” I actually DID it. It was their energy that gave me the strength to push, and I was so incredibly grateful that they were there. If I were alone, on my own, I would have quit a long time ago. These people weren’t going to let me quit, and I didn’t want to quit anymore. I just wanted to get it done.
I can’t say it was pretty by any means, but I finished. And I didn’t puke. Walking out to my car is when it hit me. “At first I wanted to cry because I wanted to quit. Then I wanted to cry because my team mates wouldn’t let me.” I was overwhelmed with gratitude for people I barely know, that I spend a few hours a week with, where we’re all just trying to make ourselves a little bit better.
It’s a sacred space in its own way. The rest of the world ceases to exist. There is no future, no past. Only now, and the task at hand.
I can’t tell you how grateful I am for my teammates that day, for showing me that I’m stronger than my will to quit, that it’s OK to be exposed and be authentic, and that I have people who are there for me and will help me get through. Thank you, Rhema. I appreciate you.