First, I just wanted to point out that I basically agree with everyone's comments on the Effort post. It occurred to me that I was speaking to the wrong audience in writing it. WE are not full of shit. WE all try our little tushes off, failure or success by damned. WE work hard because we know what it means and what it should mean to work hard. WE teach our kids that hard work is worth it, because hard work, in the end, brings satisfaction, joy, and a transcending of the fear of failure.
I guess I was really focused on society at large--and what our nation/culture appears to value, which is talent + hard work. I feel saddened when a kid is convinced it's not worth it to try because he could never really be "good" -- and I get equally sad when I see a kid forced to compete in soccer when it's not her passion--even if she is really good at it. Comments like Dwight's, "I sure hope you're good b/c it would suck to work so hard and not be good," send the message, perhaps not even subtly, that we shouldn't work hard unless we have a gift. This is crap, of course, but it's an amazingly common attitude held by adults--by teachers-by coaches-by parents--and it's absolutely toxic.
That's what I was trying to say, anyway.
Loved your comments. Thanks.
On to new things!
I got into the open water for the first time this morning. I met a friend at 5:30 am, and the lake (Farm Pond in Sherborn, pictured above--my fav. place to swim around here) was so calm, so gorgeous. At first I didn't even want to get in; I just wanted to stare at the lake and be peaceful. But get in we did....
Amazingly, the water was not cold at all. I think I could've even gone sans wetsuit. That said, I'm glad I had my wetsuit. I love the way it buoys me up and helps me to glide through the water. Rob, the friend I was with, decided to wear FINS, so I was concerned I wouldn't be able to keep up, but he kindly didn't really start cruising until the end, so it was okay. We swam around the pond, stopping a few times to catch our breath and to just look.
I had forgotten how much I love swimming in the open water. I had several moments this morning during which I felt so grateful to be alive--to be in the water--to be experiencing the early morning on the pond. Fantastic.
I love triathlon for giving me those early morning moments. Without triathlon, I would've been snoozing away this Memorial Day Monday morning. Enough said.