When I returned from Dover in September last year, I was exhausted.
Disclaimer: We’ll leave out the part of the story where I somehow – SOMEHOW - managed to participate in a triathlon during that same week I returned to San Francisco. To this day, exactly HOW I did that, I’m just not sure.
Nevertheless, MENTALLY, I was exhausted…
The enormous high from our successful English Channel relay swim caved 5 days later to a WWF-type smack-down from my unsuccessful solo crossing. I was EXHAUSTED - physically - but, most of all, MENTALLY.
I knew I was upping the ante by attempting a solo crossing of the English Channel a mere 5 days after completing a relay crossing. But it was an important personal journey for ME, and no one else. I have absolutely no regrets and when my world was falling apart in the middle of the English Channel, there was absolutely no other place I wanted to be. I loved pushing myself to the very edge. It was EXHILARATING.
Back in San Francisco, it took me a few weeks to process everything. I discovered just how mentally taxing – yet extremely exciting - the anticipation of both swims had become; the energy required to mentally prepare myself for both swims was tremendous.
In fact, both adventures gifted me so much; I really learned so much about myself and for that I’m extremely grateful. I feel so incredibly fortunate.
And so, as I find myself in “back in the saddle,” anticipating yet again, I’m reminded of the words of my Deputy Mentor:
“I think that sometimes, being humbled by grand challenges is better than succeeding at pedestrian ones. The former leaves you with a taste of your soul on your lips, whereas the latter leaves you with little more than the quiet echoes of your own ego.”