The Past- A Lesson for the Future
I swam. Swam as fast as I could. I tried to pull harder but my hands were almost numb. I tried to kick but my legs felt like they had turned to stone. I was coming second last but I was determined and I wasn’t going to give up.
I had just started competitive swimming back then. For almost a year, I had trained hard and had always been the done the best I could at my swim meets. But I had never been able to win. It was rather upsetting. I just couldn’t figure out what I was doing wrong. I was eating all the right foods and I was working very hard.
But then I saw something that completely changed my perspective towards swimming. I had gone for a training camp in Bangalore and as I saw those children, I was surprised to see that they swam using just a simple swim suit. They were too poor to afford special swimming caps or even goggles. But they had something that I and many other swimmers didn’t have. They had the hunger and the will power to win. They believed in themselves and they were swimming extremely fast. It was then that I finally realized what I had always been missing out on in racing. I had been lacking self-confidence. After losing so many races I had gotten some motivation and now I was determined to win.
I had a swim meet as soon as I went back home.
My first event was the 50m freestyle race. It was my favourite event. With 20mto finish, my body started cramping up. But my determination conquered my pain. I was second last. I sprinted harder than I had ever done before.
As soon as I touched the wall I looked up and saw the entire stadium cheering. I soon realised that they were cheering for me. I had received a standing ovation. I had won the gold medal! I was absolutely exhilarated. I won my first gold medal that day and continued to cherish that moment and will do so forever.
It was then that I learned an important lesson. The most important part of winning is to believe in yourself and learn from past mistakes. If one works hard, believes in himself and rectifies previous faults, one will always be successful. This was indeed a powerful and valuable lesson from the past that I shall always remember.
~Mallika Dasgupta, 8B, Arya Vidya Mandir Bandra West.