Intensity

July 16, 2010
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The pain was intense. It was searing throughout my entire back. I felt as though I would never be able to breathe again. I knew that there were thousands of spectators, just looking at me, watching to see what my next move would be, starring to see how much pain I was in. I knew that the second they saw the twinge of pain in my eyes I would lose, and they would have won. I also knew that if I wasn’t able to get up within the next 12 seconds that was it. I wouldn’t be able to get up at all. I took one long inhalation of air before turning onto my side, and pushing myself up as well as I could. It felt as though a thousand knives were being stabbed directly into my spinal cord, but I had to hide it. I had to work through it. I couldn’t afford to be hurt, it just couldn’t happen. As I was pushing myself up onto my feet a million thoughts poured into my mind. I couldn’t quite distinguish one from another. I rose onto my feet and saw Ty rushing over to me from the sidelines, along with him was a team of paramedics. Ty was worrying, he knew me, and he knew me well. I could tell that he knew almost exactly what I was feeling, and precisely what I was doing. He knew that no ordinary human should be capable of standing up after a fall as hard as mine. He also knew that I was no ordinary human. I wasn’t about to be defeated by something as simple as gravity. I tried to walk over to where I was sitting before anything had happened, just like I would have if nothing did happen. Only something DID happen. The paramedics pulled me out onto the stretcher before I could get any further. I saw a face in the stands for a split second. The look on their face closely resembled the one that should be stricken across my own. It was one of fear, panic, pain, and most of all, loss.
I couldn’t let myself feel those things though, not now. If I was afraid, it would only make things worse, and more stressful, on everyone. If I was panicking, people would see, and they would view me as weak. If I was in pain, it would show on the outside and I would have to say goodbye to my career. The doctors had to believe that I was fine, that was the only way they would even consider the possibility that I could recover. And I certainly couldn’t feel loss. If I felt loss that would mean it’s really over. That everything I’ve trained my whole life for is gone. Never to be recovered. I couldn’t deal with that possibility then. Maybe not ever.
As the paramedics rushed me off I was thinking about how I could have been so reckless as to get hurt. There wasn’t enough time to get hurt! There wasn’t an allotted space for me to worry about myself. I had to keep up an appearance, I had to be strong. Getting tossed into the ground like a rag doll doesn’t exactly keep up a strong image. The clock ticked by, one second at a time. Thousands of thoughts per second were flooding into me. I finally distributed them into categories of importance. Number one; show everyone that I’m fine.





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