Let’s go back to 2008 shall we?
I was 18 and about to compete in my 3000 meter run at the district track meet.
Ya see..I was fast.
My freshman year in high school I was one of the fastest freshman in our district, not to mention one of the fastest overall for distance running in my town.
Sophomore year I surprised myself.
I got second at our district meet in the 3000 when I came in ranked in the bottom half of the top ten.
I got to go to the state track meet as a sophomore which was a big deal.
Junior year I was awful.
I’m just going to say it.
I went from running an 11:02 in the 3000 to an 11:37 the very next year, from 2nd place to 7th at the district meet in one years time.
I wasn’t myself.
I spent most of my time with someone who told me I wasn’t that good.
That my sister was better than me.
That track was a waste of time.
That I wasn’t going to go to college for it so why try.
I started to believe all of those things.
I made excuses.
I gave up.
I didn’t believe in myself.
But lets not dwell too much on that, that person isn’t worth any more words on this post.
It wasn’t until the summer of 2007 when I got rid of that person in my life and decided to get myself back.
I looked forward to every single practice.
I was motivated to be better.
I had a hard cross country season in the fall but arguably my best throughout my four years.
I worked my butt off to get back to where I was at the end of my sophomore year.
Back to when I was excited.
I wanted nothing more than to find this girl and get her back.
To show her that she was the fire she needed to spark this desire to be better.
That winter was full of training, and so was the spring, leading up to my last season of running for my high school.
I felt like I wanted it more than anyone.
That I had something to prove.
To show girls who laughed at me the previous year that I was back and better than ever.
Every 3000 meter race I had run that season was faster than any 3000 I ran the year before.
I would sit on the bus on the way to meets and close my eyes.
Picturing the exact moment where I threw my hands up in success after my win.
I could see the headlines, Everetts wins district title.
That’s how bad I wanted it.
I loved getting pumped up before meets, that’s when I discovered my love for rap music.
Lil’ Wayne to be exact.
I would completely zone out and lose myself in the music.
Never show it on the outside.
It became a ritual I would end up using the rest of my racing career.
I would look at myself in the mirror and repeat out loud, it’s mine, I can do it.
I had so much confidence as we neared the end of that track season, until the day finally came.
The day I dreamed about.
The district meet.
I was coming into the meet ranked third I believe, maybe second in the 3000.
There were three of us who were competing for that title, the rest of the pack was about 15-20 seconds behind us.
I remember shaking when I was putting on my bib number.
Not because I was nervous.
But because I wanted it.
I stood on the starting line, my foot twitching like it always did.
I was ready to go.
Then the gun went off.
I ended up getting out to a quick start with one of the girls, we left the other one, and that was the last we saw of her.
We ran the first two laps of the seven and a half lap race toe to toe, and I had no intentions of letting her go.
It wasn’t until the 5th lap when we passed the crowd.
I knew there wasn’t much of the race left and one of us had to make a move.
I whispered to her, let’s do this, and we were off.
We were running faster than I ever thought possible.
Next thing I know it’s the final lap and I have the lead.
I can hear my family cheering.
Everyone was screaming as loud as they could.
I was on the last 100 meter stretch.
I could hear my friends in the stands cheering.
I pushed myself as hard as I possibly could.
And in that moment I had it.
I threw my hands up over my head in complete disbelief.
It was mine.
That moment that I had dreamed of was mine.
I ran over to my sister and gave her the biggest hug imaginable.
I ran a 10:48 and won the district title, I was off to the state meet for a second time.
10:48 was almost a whole minute faster than the year before, and quite the improvement from seventh place.
I’ll never forget how happy I was in that moment.
What I had been working for all season, all four years of high school, was here.
It’s so crazy to me how you can manifest something so much that it becomes attainable.
That if you want something so badly, along with some hard work, you can achieve it.
That’s what I did that year.
I wanted it.
More than anything.
I thought about it.
Dreamed about it.
That moment was all I thought about and it was mine.
That day I decided to believe in myself changed everything.
It allowed me to see my full potential.
To see that I was worth it.
That I could literally do anything that I wanted to do.
I can honestly say that was the moment.
The moment that I realized what I could do.
The moment I truly started to believe in myself.