When we are running our race, we have an idea of how things will go. SUre we will face obstacles and we will have disappointments, but most of us dream of not only clearing these hurdles but finishing the race with arms outstretched in triumph breaking the ribbon and crossing the finish line.
However, the reality is that some of us face a challenge so great that we pull up sharply in agonising pain and tumble to the ground, protrate. The shock of pain is so sharp, painful and sudden that we cannot catch our breaths much less get up to finish the race. We begin to think we have lost. “We have lost”, there is no way we can win, all the runners have gone way ahead and there is no way we can get past the pain much less to continue, catch them up and place.
Too many of us at this point decide to give up, “why bother, isn’t the aim to win?” “If I cannot win why bother”. So we still too long and think too much of the humiliation we face. We hear the whispers, “poor thing, so much potential, wasted”. Another nail in the coffin, why bother? The results will not match the potential, what was the point of it all?
Since the race has been lost why bother. Will I lay here and let the shame of my defeat wash over me?
Then there is the story of Derek Redmond. A story that leaves you in tears.
But It’s not over. Should we run to win the race or to complete it? Which is greater? When others pass by, long gone, for one reason or another, giving up is not an option. What is the prize that we should aim for when we run our race? Is it that piece of paper that you get at graduation, that promotion, that house car, what is the prize that we should run for. If there is one thing that I realise it is that he did not continue to get a medal that chance had long gone, but still he continued to finish his race. All his life he was known as a winner and when winning mattered so much to so many, finish mattered more in the end for him.
For us too, many of us face hurdles that damage us so greatly that we feel like walking off the track instead of continuing. However, we have to continue we have to press on. I realise it is not how we start but how we finish our race. Mny remember Redmon’s race than they do the race of the person who won. Many persons have been inspired by his seeming defeat to continue at a time when they feel like giving up. It is true that our actions have a great impact on us and others who look on at what we do and say and from that we can inspire generations to come.
Though we may lose more than we win, we must run the race with the determination to finish, knowing that we will not finish alone.