Today marks two years since I started this blog. Some months I wrote more, other months less, but overall I enjoyed the journey. As a writer one is compelled to write, whether one writes in the privacy of her own journal, on the pages of personal letters, whether one manages to publish her writings in various forms or merely creates a little sanctuary for her writing like this blog has been for me, does not really matter – as long as one does write.
One of my interests, alongside with writing, is swimming. The power of water as it shapes around the body reminds me that life is worth living. Even when I come into the swimming pool with a head full of thoughts, as I swim in the lane, one length, two lengths, five lengths, ten, fifteen, gradually I begin to let go of those thoughts and enjoy the beauty of the water that spreads in from of me. I notice light glistening on its surface, and while swimming is an excellent exercise for the body, my mind can take a rest. Not immediately, but eventually every time it happens. However, there is another lesson for life that I learned from swimming: the importance of having a goal.
It was October 2014 when I decided to start swimming again more regularly. Long time ago when I was still living in Croatia, I went swimming every Sunday and I swam around 1km, so I decided that was going to be my target. I thought it would take me a while to reach it since I haven’t swam in a few years, except during the summer holidays. But to my surprise, I swam more than that the first time. So I decided that 1km will be my minimum; every time I will swim at least that much, and if I can swim more, I will swim more. Having that as a goal prevented me to swim less on days when either my motivation or my energy were not the best.
There were days when I thought, “I won’t do my usual 1km, I don’t have energy for it”. But in spite of those thoughts I kept at it. Having made the decision to swim at least 1km every time, motivated me to do it even on the days when I did not feel like it; and sometimes on those same days I would swim much more than originally intended. Had I not had that as my goal, I would not have swam 2km at other days, nor reach my personal record of swimming 2.5km one time. Having the goal kept me persevere before giving up. It also motivated me to go beyond my limits, to stretch, to rich higher goals. I have not yet extended this wisdom to other areas of life, partly cause life is more fluid than sport and some things are out of our control. However, it is most profitable having a goal, in writing, in swimming, in living. So cheers to the last two years of blogging, but more so to having goals that will benefit our lives – because we are worth it.
© Iva Beranek (Dublin, 26th April 2016)