In her informative yet entertaining book, “Unworthy: How to Stop Hating Yourself,” Anneli Rufus tells this story:
Accepting his third annual Teacher of the Year award, Jeremy gazed out at an auditorium packed with wildly applauding children, parents, and colleagues. Silently he mourned. I was supposed to get my doctorate. I should be famous by now, not teaching fourth grade. I was supposed to have made earthshaking discoveries. It was expected of me. And I failed.
I laughed when I read this because not even 24 hours earlier my inner dialog was essentially the same. I had accomplished something—swam 4.4 miles from Annapolis, Maryland to Kent Island–that should have given me enough warm fuzzies to fill my quota for a week. This was huge for me not only because there exists no tiki bar between the two pieces of land where you can hang out for awhile if you need to catch your breath or are feeling particularly parched. It was profound because shortly after the swim last year, I had a physical and mental breakdown from which I’m still recovering. With lingering symptoms and aberrant sleep cycles, I gave my participating in this year’s race a 50/50 shot.