Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.
This quote has a lot of meaning to me. I fail more than I succeed it seems. I feel like I let my team down, my coach down and most importantly myself down when I fail. Over my athletic career there has been too many failures to count, and at the time they were all hard, although looking back to those failures I am forever grateful; I would not be where I am today without those failures. If you don’t fail you won’t succeed, because you learn from those failures and learn to better yourself. I never quit and I never let the failures get to me, rather they fueled me to do better and not do the same things again. I’ve bettered myself.
This past weekend I experienced what to me was a failure. I had a track meet at home. Ah my home run way! I was so excited, this was my house and I was going to destroy the competition. My arm wasn’t hurting (I have bicep tendentious), my knee was fine, my back was feeling okay, I was ready to kick some butt!
That is, until my first throw.
The official called my throw a “flat” which means they don’t measure it and it’s a foul. A flat is when the tip of the javelin (part with the metal cover) doesn’t point towards the ground, it doesn’t have to stick in the ground but that tip just has to turn towards the ground in the air.
I wasn’t counting it a failure just yet, but after he called my second throw flat also i started having a hint of doubt. If I didn’t get a throw that counted on my next throw I would not make the finals. I needed to make the finals so my next throw I changed my approach from my full throw to a 5 step which is just a warm up I do in practice. I was confident this would at least be called fair and they would measure it, and it was, but no where near where I should be throwing.
Making it to finals means I get three more throws, and the next two where called flat. So no marks again. At this point the official had called four of my throws and four of my teammates throws flat! This wouldn’t be a problem if the official was doing his job right, but he wasn’t. I later found out that the official thought the javelins needed to stick in the ground in order to be measured. So this means all of our throws should have been called fair but he didn’t know that.
Four out of my six throws didn’t count that day, and my marks (how far the ones they measured went) was no where near where I was normally throwing. To me, this was a failure. I had gotten third, when I was capable of getting first. The girls who got first and second threw less than what I normally throw so I would have won. I had let my coach down and I had let my family down, whom had all traveled to watch me that day. I failed them, I failed to do my best.
But from this failure, it lit a fire. This week I’ve hit the weight room hard, Ive practiced and worked on what I need to in my throw. I’m ready for the next meet. I didn’t get down on myself and I didn’t quit, I embraced the failure and made something from it. Now you might not agree because “thats still good! You still got third!” but to me, not doing my best is a failure.