Friday, February 21, 2014

The Thrill of Victory, the Agony of Defeat


Women's Olympic ice skating finals were televised last night.  I have to say, I'm a lazy viewer when it comes to the winter Olympics.  The only thing I'm interested in is the ice skating.  I don't dismiss the work and talent of the speed skater and skiers, I just love the ice skating.  

I love the American ladies, of course, but I was rooting for the Italian, Carolina Kostner.  She was so lovely in the short program, and her outfit was swooshy and elegant.  I know they don't score costumes, but that's a factor in my mind.  I'm a romantic when it comes athletes swirling across the ice - the women should be sparkly and flowy and dewy. 

Carolina Kostner (

Anyhoo... Kostner took the bronze, which is great.  ANY medal in the Olympics should be celebrated.  The athletes probably don't share that exact sentiment, but I'm proud of bronze, silver, and gold winners alike.  To even GET to the Olympics - that feat is supercalifragilisticexpialidocious.  Gracie Gold, our best American hopeful, came in fourth.  I'm proud of her too.  They're all wonderful athletes.  It takes everything out of me just to get to the gym three times a week. 

I did catch the last ten minutes of the women's hockey final - U.S. vs. Canada.  The game went into overtime, and the Canadians won.  I don't begrudge them the gold, they played hard, but the faces of the U.S. players were heart-breaking.  The medal ceremony was long - they read the names of every player from all three medaling teams - and the cameras stayed with the U.S. team for much of the time.

These girls were crestfallen.  Their eyes were so sad, some were teary, although no one sobbed openly.  Every one of them was grieving.  I have never seen such bereft faces outside a funeral.  Once commenter remarked that hockey is the only winter event in which you have to lose to get the silver. 

Members of the US team after their loss

The Olympic games really do highlight the ups and downs of chasing a dream.  Gold medal winners are ecstatic; non-golders are crushed, at least temporarily. 

It's kind of like writing.  I've felt ecstatic and crushed more than once - often about the same piece of work.  I give my everything, sometimes for years, to something, and then...nobody wants it.  Back to the drawing board.  Or the computer.  Or the ice rink.  I think winning and losing must feel the same to every heart.

I felt a bit like a winner this week when Choose to Write was released and available for purchase.  When my copy arrived, and I saw my name in print, the very first story in the book...I was very humbled and grateful.  It so warms the heart to be recognized.  Thank you, MMW gals for giving me that opportunity.

I'm back to work this week on my book and my book proposal.  I hope there's another win around the corner, but I know I still have a lot of work to do.  It might be another four years before I see success (not unlike some of the 2014 Olympians.) 

The Olympic games are truly an inspiration for anyone who's working hard to fulfill a dream.  Be it on the world stage, or here in my little central Florida loft.  For every athlete who made it to Sochi, thank you.

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