With the corona-virus raging in the world, it’s a loss that we are not having Olympics this year. This is one casualty that I have seen not many have missed.
In preparation for this Olympics, early in January, I was reading the book “A shot at history” by Indian Olympics gold winner Abhinav Bindra.
Here’s a passage that struck me when someone asked him about his gold medal..
The medal used to be in my mother’s room. Now it’s in a case with my Olympic bib (No. 1334) and score sheets in a room reserved for my trophies. People ask me if I like to touch the medal now and then. Not really. I went through the pain to get it, I won it, experienced it, felt the journey.
The medal is for the moment, reward for two hours of shooting. But for the athlete it’s not the moment of victory that matters, for it’s taken him more than two hours. It’s taken four years, probably eight, it’s taken 250 international flights, 600 moments of ‘I can’t do this,’ hundreds of technical changes, fifty tastes of defeat, four to five nervous vomits. It’s taken internal struggle, psychology books, patient coaches. It’s a dream taken and dipped into sweat to become reality.
All that is more meaningful to the athlete.