Thursday, August 27, 2009

Friday C Final at 5:42 AM Eastern - Margot's Insights

I am sharing the following with Margot's permission. Reading or listening to your children as they learn how to deal with the challenges and disappointments and achievements in life is a rather amazing and humbling thing. I believe all my children have discovered wisdom within themselves that I did not possess at their age. As all we parents know, it is a thrill when our children display characteristics that make us so proud - and a joy to have had some small part in shaping their strengths.
We had a chance to Skype today and she said I could share this message she sent me earlier today (Thursday). Again, thanks to all of you who have sent her emails and positive thoughts. Hope that I can always do the same for you and those you love!

Dearest Margot - 

This is a wonderful message. Would you consider letting me post part of it? I didn't sleep a bit last night and am going to try to go home at noon and go to bed. So, I didn't bring in my computer (I have meetings all morning). But we could try to connect if I'm home at 1 that would be 7 your time. Would you be available after that?
If not, I'll write more later, but I think your insights are absolutely correct and show the type of thinking that you need now, and througout life, to deal with the disappointments and frustration and keep moving forward, rather than down.
You are rather amazing,
I love you,



I'm sorry that I haven't been able to speak with you on skype yet. I'm sure you are waiting patiently and anxiously to do so. Its just tough to really talk in the lobby and be upset and cry like I need to. I can't tell you how much your emails have meant to me this week. I read them and I know the truth in what you say. I am searching for that thing that made me race so well at trials and I am so frustrated that I haven't been able to capture it like I want to yet while I have been here. I have gone over and over and over things in my head and I just can't figure out where the Margot went that raced three weeks ago. I feel like more so than being intimidated by the speed and experience of my competition, I have been getting caught up in the little things because I haven't been able to make the boat feel like it did back home. I think I lost some confidence in what I could do because of that. I have spent the week feeling bad and doubting whether it was a fluke that I won in the US. I have just been so discouraged. I can't believe that I got all the way here and haven't at least had a satisfying race. I know that I could have made the A/Bsemi. I know that someday I will, next year. I know that I have what it takes, but so far I have not been able to tap into that and I don't know why. 
I have talked with Matt about the boat and about being exhausted from Trials. That was everything that I had. I had no plans after Friday morning of Trials. I planned to win, but nothing else. I didn't even know we would be leaving the following weekend if I had won. I just peaked at Trials and had nothing else afterwards. I have learned a lot over these past couple of weeks about how to bring myself out of this while I'm still here and get everything I possibly can out of the rest of my experience here, but also about what I need to do next year to put myself in a better position and to really plan for the World Championships, not just getting there. I think that was 99% of what this year was about: seizing the opportunity and making it here. So, in a way, I achieved everything I wanted to this year, just wish that the racing had gone a little bit better, that I had shown more of what I am really capable of. 
If you look at the boats that really had to race hard at trials and fight for their spot on the team, the ones like me who had to race hard have had a tougher time here making the a/b semifinals and finals. Warren (men's heavy single) and Megan (the lightweight single) both won their races by over 14 and 18 seconds each of the two finals at trials, and both have advanced to the a/b semis. Myself, the men's heavy double, the men's lightweight single all had very close races, within 1 to 3 seconds, both days of trials finals, and none of us have made the a/b semis. 
I don't like the make excuses for my performance, but I can't help believing that I am in a slump right now after such a high at trials. Trials was the focal point of everything this year and to try to maintain that level of intensity and speed while travelling, while adjusting, while not having my luggage for three days, while I am at the biggest event in rowing other than the Olympics is a lot to ask for my first year in the single. 
I think considering that I started training at the end of January, I have had an amazing year and I am so proud of what I have accomplished. Most importantly, I know I am not done. I am not done. I know that it can be me up there listening to the National Anthem at the end of the A final. I believe that. And this has been another test of that belief. And you are right, every time I have been forced to get better, I have. I know that I have that in me and that ultimately that ability can get me the result I want in the end. These women are just like me.

I think for this final, rather than trying to win, I am going to try to have my best race and be consistent. For me. I want to go out and row with confidence and belief and show what I am capable of to myself. I may be in the C final and I may have to wait until next year, or even the year after that to get the A final, or to get a medal, but having to go through that and be patient will only fuel my desire to be the best. 
I remember so many times in my rowing career having to wait and watch and plan. Being injured and watching others win races that I knew I could win. All of this, all of this has made me the rower I am today. And though I may feel embarassed that I couldn't perform better, I know that it is in there to be truly great. I just have to get as much as I can from this and be patient and believe.
Thank you for everything Mom. I am so lucky to have you and your love and support in my life. In the hard times it is such a comfort and constant in my life. 
Talk to you soon.

No comments: