The scene: Gold’s Gym at 9:30am. We had just finished up an hour long BodyPump class, lead by James. Wearing my walking cast, I bobbled my way to put away my gear and clean off my mat. While around the corner, I heard the following conversation on the other side of the wall:
1. “Did you see that woman wearing the cast? Is she crazy or something?”
2. “Really. Who is she trying to impress? What is she trying to prove?”
1. “Desperate for attention.”
There was more being said, but they were walking away, and I stayed in the back room, hidden and suddenly ashamed. I felt sick. Hurt.
It didn’t take me long to be able to move past the experience. Much like I tell Alyssa frequently: People who direct mean comments your way are often either intimidated by you or jealous that you have something they want. Their hurtful words say more about who they are as people than who I am as a person. But, something they said really stuck with me. I haven’t been able to get it out of my head. What am I trying to prove? I felt this deserved a little consideration.
What am I trying to prove? Well, here it goes:
- I’m trying to prove to myself that I am more than what I’ve ever given myself credit for.
- I’m trying to prove that I am able to handle setbacks.
- I’m trying to prove that I am capable of getting outside of my comfort zone.
- I’m trying to prove that I’m stronger than my foot.
- I’m trying to prove to my parents that they didn’t raise a quitter.
- I’m trying to prove to Alyssa that her mother isn’t a quitter.
- I’m trying to prove to those who think they can’t, that they can.
- I’m trying to prove that I can be stronger than I was yesterday, hurt foot and all.
- I’m trying to prove that I am not a victim in my life.
- I’m trying to prove to myself that I am an athlete.
- I’m trying to prove that exercise is a purely selfish act that I am worthy of.
- I’m trying to prove to others that all of the above applies to them as well.
So, to those women, I say an honest and sincere thanks. If not for their conversation, I wouldn’t have spent so much time thinking about what I’m trying to prove and who I am trying to prove it to. Desperate for attention? No. I wouldn’t say that. Grateful for the attention? Yes. It helps drive me. Knowing that people are rooting for me or gathering strength off my stories, photos, or rantings is a huge motivation for me. I’ll own that. Crazy? Well. Yeah. Obviously. But what am I trying to prove? So much. And when it all comes down to it, I hope those women figure out what they’re trying to prove by trying to knock down a girl who is trying her best. And when they figure that out, I hope they decide to prove to themselves that they are capable of so much more and so much better. And when they do, I’ll be there to pat them on the back…because when it all comes down to it, we ALL have something to prove.