Monthly Archives: December 2012


If I try hard enough, I can find a silver lining in a lot of situations. For instance, right now, I’m telling myself that the silver lining to my insomnia (it’s currently 3 am) is that I do my best writing when I’m overtired. {Except for tonight. Because my grammar is terrible. Bear with me — I’ll edit when I have more than 6 hours of sleep in 3 days.}

When Tom ruined his ankle, looking back we can see how it landed us here in the Carolinas. Living 6 months apart when he was in California ended up being our saving grace, since we weren’t stuck in a lease and could move here for a better opportunity.

Tonight, or I guess last night, Tom didn’t make a legal snatch at the American Open, rendering him essentially out of the competition, out of medal contention, and unable to help his team get points for the title. It was, and is, an absolutely heartbreaking situation. The worst case scenario is always an injury. This seems like the second-worst.

It is so hard to put all this in perspective. Watching him come home every day from practice, bruised and bloody, aching and sore, you tell yourself that it’s all worth it. And for his teammates that walked away tonight with gold, unequivocally, it was. For the teammates that placed and put up respectable numbers, they’ll probably agree. But when he walked off that stage after the 3rd snatch, I wasn’t so sure. {Obviously it’s not my decision, I’m just keeping it real.}

And I wondered if he was going to come back out for the clean + jerk. I know Tom, and I know he’s not a quitter, but after a defeat like that, for someone as emotional as he is, you wonder if it’s worth the pressure. And then it was his turn, and he stormed up on that stage with a ferocity I had never seen before. And I knew at that moment he’d make his lift. And he did. And then his second turn. And the number was high. And I knew if he made this lift, his 3rd attempt would be a PR. And he made the second. And that was it. I knew he was going for it. He didn’t just walk onto that stage. He MARCHED onto that stage, staring this bar down, looking for vengeance. He was going to prove it to himself, to the audience, to his coach, to his teammates, and to that bar, that he was good. And he did. The lift was beautiful. The look on his face was frightening. And then his victory celebration…it was so exciting.

And there you have your silver lining. The feeling I had in my stomach after the snatch session was awful, and I wouldn’t want to experience that again or wish it upon another lifter. But without that, I wonder if he would have made the 192 later. Would he have the determination, the fuel, the focus that it would take to get three white lights?

Medal or no medal, it is obvious to see that this kid has something special. He’s strong, but he’s new and raw in this sport. And tonight is the sandpaper that will smooth him down and make him a great weightlifter.

“In this life, we’re not looking for easy. We’re looking for worth it.”