My husband and I were talking the other night and I mentioned that I don’t think I’m very competitive. He burst out laughing and I was offended. Come on, buddy! You’re talking to a woman who is so non-competitive she throws games of Settlers when she feels bad that someone else is losing. You’re talking to the woman who lived in a sorority with girls who wore designer clothes WHILE SHE WAS PREGNANT AND HER HUSBAND WAS IN GRAD SCHOOL SO SHE COULD ONLY AFFORD FIVE MATERNITY SHIRTS AND TWO PAIRS OF CAPRIS AND NOT ONLY DID SHE HAVE TO WEAR THEM IN FRONT OF TINY GORGEOUS GIRLS DAY IN AND DAY OUT, SHE ALSO HAD TO WASH THEM IN THE SAME LAUNDRY ROOM AS THEIR 7 FOR ALL MANKIND JEANS AND THEIR THONGS AND SEE THOSE ITEMS DRYING ON THE RACKS NEXT TO HER ENORMOUS DISCOUNT MATERNITY CLOTHES.
Not that I cared. It’s easy to be a big pregnant lady in a sorority! You should totally try it.
But back to my point. My husband pointed out that I am actually very competitive–with myself. And he’s right.
In high school, I was a runner. I wasn’t anything to write home about; but I loved it and I was good enough to make the All-State team and I had some fast(ish) times. I’m still a runner and will always be one, but I don’t train like I once did. I don’t do speed workouts and hills anymore, and I have no desire to do so. I was wondering about that–why I don’t even want to push myself to the limit every day anymore–and I think my husband just figured it out.
I run for fun now because I know that I can’t beat myself.
I’ll never beat those times from high school and college. There’s just no way. I will run until the day I die or my knees give out, but the element of competition is gone for me. I know I’ve run my fastest races.
But. I still don’t think I’ve written my best book. I look back at each book and can see improvement; I remember how hard I worked. But I still think there are better books in me.
So. Game on, me. I hereby challenge myself to set a PR (in running lingo, a personal record) in writing. I hope that this next year I write something better than anything I’ve written before.