A Handful of Dirt

by laserlife

Running around is a really tough business when you have got so many things to worry about.  Paying the bills, filling the gas tank, getting the children to school, cooking dinner…life in general, as usual, was always a constant presence in Albert’s mind, but this was definitely not going to be enough to stop him from chasing his dreams. Albert loved the water and everything that was involved with it, from sailing to snorkeling.  He had been an excellent swimmer throughout his entire childhood, but things started to get really serious when he started to swim for the college team, an activity that gave him the chance to travel throughout the state and participate to many different competitions on a local and regional level.At one of these competitions, Albert came to a striking conclusion, just out of the blue.  His passion for sport was not going to be a viable economic option, and overtime, he noticed that it was getting increasingly hard for him to travel around for little to no money, spend hours and hours training to reach the best possible shape.  He was not a kid anymore, he was not a student and he had other responsibilities too: he had a home to run, a wife and two kids who relied on him, and although he loved swimming with a deep and intense passion, he loved his kids and he loved his wife too.  He started to realize that the more time he dedicated to one part of his life, the more he needed to sacrifice the other, and this was starting to become really heavy on him.

They say that when you try to hold so much dirt on your hand, each grain of sand will slip through your fingers, and this was exactly what was happening to Albert, trying to hold on to different sides of his life as if time was absolutely not an issue.  As a consequence, not only his training was being undermined by his high level of stress, but his relationship with his family too.  It is never healthy to live in a situation of constant tension, where you do not even know how to be honest to yourself.
Let’s face it, life is never going to turn out exactly as we plan it.  In Albert’s picture, he was going to be a professional athlete, traveling the world and just doing what he loved to do, but time just did not seem to have the same plan.  Leaving his family behind did not seem like something he could do, no matter what.  But on the other hand, the prospect of just relegating swimming as a so called “weekend hobby” was literally killing him.
In the end, when a decision had to be made, Albert decided to quit swimming altogether.  This is something that any professional athlete could understand and relate too: If you loved something so deeply, and if you put so much effort into it, you cannot simply turn it into a hobby.  It’s all or nothing!

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