Finishing the Race
Finishing the race. Just finish. Don’t mess it up , I kept telling myself. Just finish, Bryan. Get there. Do your best, I told myself, remembering my deal with God. The finish line came swimming into view. Many of the guys had already crossed it and were walking around with hands on their hips. The line seemed to hover in a timeless space for a moment, untouchable, unreal, the culmination of so many dreams, so many promises, so much planning and sacrifice by my wife, my family, my coaches, and me. As I stumbled toward it, hoping not to collapse onto the track, it seemed as if it would recede forever in front of me, always unattainable. My halting steps ate away at the distance, and casting aside remaining doubts, I lunged across the finish line, veered onto the grass, and fell onto my back. You would have thought I had just completed a marathon. In a way, I had. I heard the crowd roar. Oh, thank God it’s over, I thought. There was no sense of victory or glory—just pure relief. I lay there with absolutely nothing left inside me. But I had done it.