Stronger Than That

“You’re going to lose.”


Those words ruined my entire race. Moments before, as I had examined the heat sheet, I had exclaimed that I might have a chance at winning. Normally not being the fastest swimmer in the pool, I was ecstatic.


Until someone said those words. At first, I thought it was someone from another team; then I looked up and saw one of my teammates watching me, and she continued her thought,
“Sorry, but I’m going to win that heat. You can try, but knowing you and your times, you’ll probably get third or fourth.”


I was numbed, than I got angry.  Really angry. Determined to kick her butt, I went over to my lane and started stretching. I put on my cap and goggles and glanced at the board. I was next.


“Swimmers, on the blocks.”


I climbed up, glancing to the teammates at the end of my lane, ready to cheer me on for my favorite event: the 200 freestyle. (All sprinters reading this probably think I’m crazy. Don’t worry, I think I’m crazy to :D)
“Swimmers, take your marks.”


Everything went silent as I bent down. I tensed, waiting for the buzzer to go.


BEEP!!!


I jumped. I was going to run off of anger, and I was going to win. I worked my turnover, my kick, my turns, and finally, my finish. Glancing at the clock, I saw that I had gotten third place. The teammate who had told me I was going to lose won the heat. I had failed.


***


(At the state meet, where every YMCA in SC came to compete. This was the biggest meet of the year. This meet was about 4 months after the first fiasco)


“You’re going to lose.”


Total déjà vu, right? Same person, same place, same cap, same goggles, different event. This time, it was a 50 freestyle, which is a MUCH shorter than a 200.


I had been training all winter, preparing myself physically and mentally for this one meet. I was not going to let this girl ruin my race. I was stronger than that.


“Good luck,” I responded, and started my stretches. I put my cap on and put my goggles on, tight. (I was not going to forfeit this race because my goggles fell off.) I said a quick prayer, than glanced at the board. I was next.
“Swimmers, on the blocks.”


I climbed up and saw my personal cheer squad at the end of the lane. I smiled at them best I could (my goggles were REALLY tight) and gave them a thumbs up.


“Swimmers, take your mark.”


I bent over, and the world went silent. I glanced at my hands, and the “I swim for Him” with a cross drawn there. I took a deep breath. I could feel my heart beating, my muscles tensing.


I can do this. I am strong, I am a champion, and I and win this race.


I could feel the energy in the air as we held our breath, waiting to begin. The world stood still, for those couple of milliseconds, until the buzzer sounded.


BEEP!!!


I jumped. Sound came rushing back and as I dived, I could hear my name being screamed. Then the world went silent as I went underwater. My turnover was fast, strong. I had a steady kick, and wasn’t feeling the normal push for air. I flew through the water and finished strong. Sound came rushing back and I heard my name when I touched the wall. A glance at the board revealed that I had won my heat AND gotten a best time.


Thank you, God!


“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me”
-Philippians 4:13
“For the Lord your God is he who goes with you to fight for you against your enemies, to give you the victory.”
-Deuteronomy 20:4
“But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.”
-Isaiah 40:31


 






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guard-girlThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Sept. 20, 2015 at 5:35 pm
Love this! :)
 
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