Time plays mind games, I’m sure of it.
Watching the Olympics this time around has caused me to do a little minor soul searching. It used to be that the Olympians looked old to me, largely because they were all older than I was. Sixteen. Eighteen. Twenty. Twenty two. They were shiny, muscular adults, and I watched them in awe, my kid brain trying to figure out if I could ever be that awesome.
Now I watch the Olympics and realize, to my horror, that now they’re the kids, and I’m the adult. In fact, in Olympian years, I’m a granny. Twenty-year-olds are referred to as “mature,” “experienced,” and “close to retirement,” since “these will be her last Olympic games.”
These children, for children they are, have accomplished more in two weeks than I have in my entire life. They have worked harder, dreamed bigger, and conquered more obstacles than I’ve ever even thought of attaining to. These kids aren’t just talented, they’re dedicated. It’s that dedication that I envy. So far I’ve stuck to blogging every day for a year. And school—for twelveish years. Whoop-de-doo-da.
Everybody’s got a different journey. We can’t all be Olympians. We can’t all be visionaries or people who change the world through a single invention. We can’t all be teachers or pastors or evangelists or presidents or earth-shakers. Not everyone can be a C.E.O. or a V.P. or a V.I.P. The world needs bloggers. And postmen. And bakers and plumbers and hairdressers and tailors and accountants. Librarians. Secretaries.
But whatever it is we do, we all need to be dedicated to it.
So no one can let it bother him too much that he’s not a world-record breaking sprinter. While everyone ought to appreciate someone else reaching their goal—like getting a gold medal or any color medal at all—that doesn’t mean that all of our goals need to be the same. Me, I just want to write stuff. You…well, you do whatever it is you do best.
But still…sixteen years old. I was happy just to get an A on a test when I was sixteen. I’m older than the Olympians.
Am I allowed to feel old now?