I woke up a little angry today.
This is rare. I usually don't wake up feeling like, really, anything, except hitting the snooze button perhaps. But I just felt kind of mad. At me.
I think what triggered this was that I finally got my swim photo from Ironman Wisconsin. They forgot to include it before, blah blah blah. So it came in the mail a few days ago. And I probably should just throw it away. Because it really just reminds me of feeling rotten.
The photographer that snapped my picture as I tried to get off my wetsuit and stepped on the mat completely captured my emotions of that moment. Too much, I think.
It is a face of complete, utter disappointment and disgust.
Now, I realize that my 1:28 swim is "fine." I realize that this may sound a little bit like someone who is mad about running a 3:47 marathon because they wanted 3:40. But, in this one instance, I think I understand how that feels.
For ME, and this is why I do this, anyway--for ME--I had a rotten swim that day. The worst swim of that distance of my life, actually. And when I look at that picture, I see it in my face. No one else probably could even see it, but I know me. And I know what's going through my head at that exact moment.
"I blew it."
For me, on my face I see the look of someone who knew they could do better and didn't. And that, for me, is the worst feeling of all.
I know, I know...all the things my head and even my friends have told me to try to justify....
"It was a record Ironman swim start--more people than in any Ironman in history"
"Most people's times were a little slow...not like what they usually post"
"Even the pros came out later than usual, Sara"
"You had a BLACK EYE at school on Tuesday from the BEATING you took in the water"
Blah. I hate excuses.
When it comes down to it, I swam 4500 yards in the pool weekly at a much faster pace than what I swam that 4224 on Ironman morning. And it's the ONLY thing I'm disappointed about. Not the endless, cold bike ride from hades....not my marathon (actually, I think that was my favorite). Just my swim.
Because I could have done better. I can do much better. I expected to come into T1 nowhere near that. I had a number in my head and it wasn't even close to the one I saw on that clock when I stepped on that mat, and I see it in my face and I hate it.
I want another shot. But I can't have one for a while. So I'm just going to have to tuck that picture away for the time being, I think. I'll pull it out again when it's time to prepare for IM swim #2.
In the meantime, I am pretty proud of myself for being able to move past the moment. When I read my recap of that swim again, and when I remember how I decided at that moment--or rather, the moment AFTER that photog snapped my utter disgust--I was going to have to forget it or it would eat me up that day, I am happy that I was able to do that. So, in that sense, the picture doesn't really tell all of the story.
Because if, on the bike, I sat there and bitched in my head at myself about how much that sucked, I would have wasted so much energy on negativity. (Kind of like I am right now)
And I really don't think I would have made it. I needed all the energy I could get that day.
So, I'm gonna try to remember that. Clocks are clocks, bad stuff happens, and disgust and disappointment happen too. They are inevitable.
But the real test in life is what you do with them.
And I moved on that day. So I'll just put this picture away, and do that now.