How do I look at this growing massive mountain of seemingly improbable tasks, keep my head up, and bravely run at it straight on, with a kind of energy that surpasses all I have ever exerted on myself in my known memory? The monster laughs louder each day, and I cover my head in shame. It insists that I trudge on ahead towards the mountain… Knowing that I will eventually fall even deeper into its trap, and sink again into a sticky pool of consuming self-loathing and regret. I feel like I tried to hold the world in my arms, and it’s punishing me for even trying.
I’ll give you exhibit A:
With my prideful naiveté, I always thought that I am nearly unshakable, and strong enough to take up any physically enduring challenge that came my way… And this led me to join the cycling team, and this was partly because I always beat my brother in a cycling race. So, I set out to purchase a $300 bike from Amazon, in order that I begin this journey. You can surely see where this story is already headed. I didn’t want to recognize that it was the same old path of me trying to outsmart myself by sheer will. As I discovered, will can only take me so far. I remember a couple of years back reading the famous Robert Greene book- Mastery, and at one point he mentions the 10,000-hour rule. My mind refused to come to terms with this principle in my mind and I believed that I could will myself into the cycling team, overlooking all other commitments that I had, that took my time, forgetting that all the other cycling team members had put in hundreds if not thousands of hours into their cycling, but I had only put in a little over one or two hours a weekend! when I was a kid! So, when time came for practice runs, oh boy I pedaled. I pedaled on like a mindless hamster running endlessly around its wheel. And even as I watched the rest of the team break off from me, I pushed my body to catch up with them. But the more I pushed, the more they seemed to get farther and farther away, until they became itsy bitsy minute earthlings and faded into the horizon. I could still catch them on their way back, I told myself. However, I never saw them ever again! Not on their way back from the round trips nor on any other cycling runs. Because I just couldn’t catch up with them while at the same time being the same person I was to other people, or even myself. I clearly had priorities in my Life, and somehow, I thought I could fit cycling into my schedule, while at the same time having my priorities in the same exact place and order. Some of my priorities had to certainly shift for me to realize the task of joining the cycling team, and I was too stubborn to let that happen. I wanted to build a new house on top of the old one… Without moving and changing something, or taking down the old house.
I have never understood disappointment, never known how to deal with disappointment, I dread disappointment, and I am not always super excited to stare disappointment at its face. But each time I take way more weight than my muscle can lift, disappointment comes knocking, and when I open the door, it knocks me down hard. Thus far, disappointments have only shown me that I barely know my limits in some things that I take on, and while I try to take them on bravely, I can only do so much.
My hope in sharing this, is that we learn to need each other in doing what lies beyond where your arm can stretch to- that they will hold you and by the sheer fact of having people around you that can do the rest, you can do your part best.