Hello again! It’s been a long time since my last post, and I have a new look to the site! Do ya like it?!
Well it’s been an eventful summer, some good, some bad, but in everything I am a learning a ton and God has been faithful to not let me go even though I have felt very distant at times. I write a confession today; one that is hard because my pride has been hurt in the past few weeks as I have been unable to get off the ground during practices. It started after I had taken a couple week hiatus from vaulting at the end of season in order to give my mind and body a rest. When I returned something happened mentally. I had lost ALL confidence in my approach, my plant, and my take off. After about 30 run-throughs in a matter of two practices, I broke down. As I laid on the mat with tears in my eyes I was thinking to myself “what if I can never get off the ground again”…. Now I know this is dramatic, but I am a girl so what do you expect?! We’re crazy. And though I could rationally tell myself that the thought was untrue, my emotions were another story.
I’ve been battling at every practice. I’ve done 100 drills. I’ve done 100 long runs into a slide box. Standing on the back of the runway I tell myself to go for it… but three steps out, a fear grips me inside, and I drop my pole. It’s so baffling, and so frustrating. Vaulting is so fun! And from day one there has never been fear, not like this. Maybe a little hesitation here or there but nothing debilitating and nothing lasting. So where did this come from? How do I get rid of it? Why is it there?
I have no solid answers, but I can tell you some of the lessons that have been taught to me throughout the last couple weeks.
One: Fear is not from God. However, He is there to hold my hand through it all. He desires to know me and to know my fears, and He is pleased when I am honest about them with Him.
Two: God doesn’t expect me to get it perfect every single time. Whether it be in vaulting, in speaking, in loving, in working… He already knows that I am a screw up and to say I’m not would be absurd. Rather, He takes joy in comforting me, in teaching me, and in walking alongside of me during the process.
Three: Vaulting is REALLY fun! And I won’t let a mental setback destroy my confidence or my enjoyment!
So for today’s practice my coach and I went to a small pole and a short run, and you know what… I took off the ground! Not only did I take off the ground, I took off the ground like 15 times… and I loved it! Back to basics. Get off the ground. Land on the pit. Maybe get upside down in between the two… Sometimes you just need to hit the reset button. Yea, it’s hard to admit that you can’t do something for the moment, especially something that you’ve done a thousand times. But you know what’s better than failing over and over again? Letting your pride go and taking a few steps back. I didn’t want to admit that I couldn’t do my long run… not with Street Vault on the horizon… not when I am getting the chance to perform in front of my friends and family… But my pride was hurting me, and it was turning the thing I love to do into something that was so discouraging. There were and are many factors playing into the mental block, but all are passing, none are lasting. The only lasting thing is the promise that God has given me:
“The Spirit helps us in our weakness… God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose… What shall we say then? If God is for us, who is against us?… Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?… But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” *
So going into Friday, and the Clovis Street Vault, you know what I am going to do?! Have fun! I’ll be on a short run and small poles… maybe I clear a bar, maybe I don’t. But you know what I am going to do? Enjoy myself! I will have fun jumping in front of my friends and family, encouraged because they are an amazing group of people. I will enjoy being around a fantastic pole vault community, watching some of the best vaulters in the USA. I will give glory to God and thank Him for allowing me to be all that He made me to be. I will wear a smile, because at the end of the day, how many people are lucky enough to say that they do one of the best events in the world?
*Full reading from Romans 8:26-39