Speeding Out of the Turn of a Decade

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Speeding Out of the Turn of a Decade

As school resumes, it can be hard to rise. You should, and here is how.

As school resumes, it can be hard to rise. You should, and here is how.

Joey Goodsir

As school resumes, it can be hard to rise. You should, and here is how.

Joey Goodsir

Joey Goodsir

As school resumes, it can be hard to rise. You should, and here is how.

Joey Goodsir, Editor-in-Chief

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Previously: Time is Flying By (Ava)

As I swam towards the wall for the 300th time last week, it was hard to muster the energy to plunge my arm and head downward, flip off the wall, and get a good hard push once again. 

In case you don’t know, the Boys Swimming and Diving team takes on a big undertaking each year in the midst of their rigorous Winter Break training. In a charitable effort to support and raise money for the Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association (GLASA) and the Max Schewitz Foundation, each member of the varsity team swims 10,000 yards in a lengthy “100 x 100s” set (JV generally swims 100 x 50s, and Diving does 100 dives). 

The morning is all about pushing yourself to do not only anything you set your mind to, but more than what you’d first expect, all for great causes. 

It is a simple task, but far from easy — and I was surely feeling it midway through. My mind was blank, my muscles were aching, and I could no longer turn to only my will for motivation.

Yet, there I was 5,000 yards later, goggles off and giving myself a soft fist pump — a tired celebration of my completion of the monumental task for the fourth (and final) time in my high school career.

As a treasurous winter break comes to an end, we all quietly and often unexcitedly make our way through the doors of 1285 N McKinley. I wouldn’t be too scared to make the claim that all of you may feel the same way I did before making that 300th turn. 

Yes, the break may have subsided the aches and pains of a grinded-out first semester, but we all know that breaks never feel quite long enough to erase it completely, if not exposing us to the ease of laziness and our unwillingness to revert back to the mean of the working life for another long period of time. 

So the crucial question: How do we do it when we get to that point? How do we “get up” once again for the journey that lies ahead?

Even though I lived through four years of accomplishing sometimes difficult and unenjoyable tasks with great reward (both in the water and out of it), it took me nearly all of it to find the answer. I will try my best right now to use my experiences and guide you to it to spare you all the searching.

 

Visual Image Photography
This jacket was possible due to a simple commitment I would almost describe as an accident, but the reason I have earned it and treasured it forever is something to remember as we come back to school.

It would be nice if I could say something romantic about the moment I made the commitment to Varsity Swimming, but I really can’t. I didn’t have any idea what I was doing. Seriously. I just thought “Why not?” in the moment and counted myself in at my first team meeting — I would almost describe it as an accident, and I am thankful it wasn’t a mistake.

But this letter is not about that. It isn’t hard to make sense of that. It’s simple, I just saw an opportunity and took it — “full send” or whatever. It’s an important thing, but we have to be honest with ourselves: it’s not that hard to do. Making a commitment is a first step, but it is just that in the end. Let’s not do the easy thing and overrate that.

This letter is about the pattern that took me years to understand. It’s the fact that I took the pain, the exhaustion, and the time-consumption my commitment entailed. I’m very familiar with the brink of quitting, but somehow I’m still here.

This is not the easy thing. Unlike a “full send” moment, a “full send” lifestyle is excruciating. I knew this and lived it, but inexplicably, I never backed out of it. I can’t say it enough: I had no clue why.

And then, at that same team meeting this final season of my high school career, I was called up to speak about making that commitment. To my surprise, what I saw in front of me was the big answer to the bigger question that I had long searched for. 

Here at Lake Forest High School, the most lucky and valuable thing we have to our development is a tight-knit community in which you will find people with the magic tool of mutual experiences. Unlocking this tool is what gets you to execute and live the commitment you once made. 

I just realized a simple but omnipotent truth: without the team, it just doesn’t happen. Without my classmates, it just doesn’t happen. Without my friends, it just doesn’t happen. Without my family, it just doesn’t happen. Without you, it just doesn’t happen.

On the last morning of the 2010s, that is what got me to that moment of quiet happiness. So let’s make that 300th turn together, and speed out of it faster than ever, ready to make the next 100 even better. We can even enjoy some of it along the way, and we’ll blow each others’ minds once we take those goggles off.

After all, we have what is around us and a fantastic opportunity in front of us. And that’s all we need.