The Olympics are in full swing and upon us. I’ve always enjoyed watching the Olympics. I prefer winter usually because of the hockey, but summer has some fun points too. In fact, one summer I recall drinking on a friend’s front porch and saying to myself and everyone else on the porch, ‘man, gymnastics can’t really be that hard, right?’ SPOILER ALERT: They really are that difficult. Don’t think that you can perform flips on the lawn with zero training. You probably can’t. Well, at least I couldn’t.
It doesn’t matter who you are, you should be able to appreciate the athleticism of these people. These are some seriously in-shape people.
Last night I watched Katie Ledecky from the USA set a new world record, breaking the previous one. Oh, and the previous one was set by her. Oh, and she is 19 years old. Why are other people even showing up? This girl is basically competing against herself.
And then there is me. We’re all athletes in our own way, right?
As I sat and watched her set a new world record, my first thought was ‘wow, in the last two hours I drank both a milkshake and a margarita.’ (I had a good friend over who I hadn’t seen in way too long and she offered to bring both and I willingly obliged because it’s rude not to, and because banana milkshakes are delicious.) Katie and I are not on the same track athletically and physically.
This brings me to the comparison game. What a dangerous game it can be. In all walks of life we tend to compare ourselves with others. Our financial status, our relationship status, our houses, our cars, our clothing, our kindness, our generosity, how clean our house is, how healthy we eat, how much we work out, how much we pray, how versed we are in the Bible, the list the goes on and on.
It’s never going to be an accurate comparison because everyone is in fact different. It is always the first thing we jump to though as humans. I always forget to factor in all of the pertinent aspects though. I tend to just look at my failures and say how I don’t keep my house the way so-and-so does, or I’m not as organized as that one girl who perfectly preps all of her meals for the week and they are healthy and delicious too.
When I worked full time, I forgot to factor that in when I compared myself to others who were always perfectly put together and prepared for everything, yet they didn’t work full time. Now, I still compare my body to others. Yet, most of the people I’m comparing myself too are not on disability with a chronic illness and are not taking multiple medications.
Then I have to slap myself.
Maybe I need to be like Katie Ledecky and compete against only myself. Each day is a new day to start over. I’m never going to be perfect. I’m never going to eat perfectly, work out, have a perfect clean house, have laundry caught up, be put together in a cute outfit with hair and makeup done, have spent time in the word and in prayer, made an effort in each friendship and in my relationship with my husband all in one day, each day! I need to be realistic and set reasonable and attainable goals for me in my life now. It’s unfair to expect my body to suddenly be able to do more than it can.
It’s almost like I have to make my peace with the fact that I’ll never be perfect, but my husband always says that my imperfections are what make me perfect.