At one point during training on Friday, my coach asked what I was thinking because he couldn’t read me. I teased that he was losing his super power but admitted that I wasn’t actually thinking about anything at that moment. Over the past couple of weeks, he has also made a couple of comments about me not looking like myself. I think his super powers are intact after all. I doubt that most of the people I interact with on a regular basis would be able to recognize that difference in me. I’m going about my day-to-day life in the usual fashion, but there is a massive storm raging inside of me. It’s been building and raging for at least a month now, and I have had to batten down the hatches.
There are multiple fronts to this storm, and not all of the fronts are necessarily bad things. Good things can cause stormy weather, too. But good or bad, I’ve been keeping most of it all inside, locked up tight. While I’ve alluded to some of my inner thoughts here, like the proverbial picture of an iceberg, there is so much more that is unseen, unsaid and must remain so.
I went for a walk this afternoon and spent 50 minutes lost in my internal thought storm.
It is difficult to even put into words how I am feeling heading into Western Canadians in 12 days. What I am feeling right now is completely different than anything I have experienced prior to any of my previous competitions. I don’t know that this is fear, not exactly, because it doesn’t feel like nervousness or fear although I suspect there is some of both swirling in the mix. There is a great deal of uncertainty and doubt, more than I have ever had before, yet I can’t quite tell if the doubt is in my ability on the platform or on all that takes place off of the platform. It’s probably both. I’ll joke about the fact that at least I should be able to make my openers, but there is a part of me that isn’t actually joking. I am confident that I will hit my openers; it’s the following attempts that feel hazy.
Last night I half-jokingly asked my husband if he’d still love me even if I screwed up at Westerns. Of course, he said he would, not that I honestly expected a different response. It’s just me. For all of my focus and determination and mental strength, heading into this competition I feel small, lost, alone and weak. I know the importance of believing in myself, and yet my belief is teetering on the edge of a dangerous precipice. What if I can’t do it? As much as I want to win, I’m not even all that concerned with winning most of the time these days, because…well, how can I think about winning when I’m struggling just to believe I can do what I need to do for myself.
My outward appearance may look calm and confident, but I’m a frightful mess on the inside.