My wife and I have been watching the Olympics. Not as much this week. Seems a little anticlimactic after Phelps won the eight gold medals. Also a little disappointing after the gymnastics. I am still not sure how a parent prepares a daughter for such heartbreak in such a subjective event. If it is a race there is no (or little) question as to who won. But if the event is “judged” there will always be difficulties.
I did notice something interesting though. When the women’s beach volleyball played Belarus, Belarus was about to score a major upset and win the first game. It was match point 20-17. Belarus had momentum and emotion on their side. Game ends at 21, but you have to win by 2. The US women held on for SIX match points. The Belarus team getting ahead, the US tying them. Then the US got match point at 23-22. As soon as the player from Belarus missed the shot to give the US the go ahead, you could see it on her face. They were done. The winning point came in mere seconds. The next game was 21-10 US. Matches are the best two out of three, so Belarus was still in it. But as soon as the US got the advantage, Belarus was psychologically crushed.
Contrast that to Michael Phelps’ seventh gold where he won by .01 of a second. He was way behind at the turn, but then hammered home and won with a final push. One guy made a reach. Another kept driving. That was all it took-but it took all of it.
For me, I wonder sometimes if I feel like I have control of life, then when I fall behind a bit, do I get psychologically crushed? Or do I drive to the end instead just reaching?