The Unbearable Lightness of Being
I chose this title from Milan Kundera’s book and the subsequent film that was made.
It’s been a tough old time for a couple of friends of mine recently. Vlad’s crisis is pretty well chronicled on his blog and it’s not been easy reading and so it couldn’t have been easy to write. But as we’ve come to learn, Vlad’s going to tell us all, the good and the bad. Whilst I don’t know him that well personally, having only met him in Denver at WPC 07, one thing I’ve come to learn is that he’s a “people person” and willing to connect with people across the Ocean. Maybe, it’s because having been born outside of the US he has a wider perspective but the “shout outs” he gives to colleagues over here are really welcome and a motivation to ordinary SBSC Partners. One thing I do know about Vlad is that you have to earn his respect.
Another friend of mine has had a tough time having taken part in a 100km trek for Charity in a team of people but had to pull out before the finish. She was dejected and sent an email out to her supporters and was open about her feelings. She’d trained hard for many months with her colleagues and endured a punishing mental and physical schedule. During this time she’d injured her knee and on the actual walk she was taking pain killers which I believe ultimately caused the stomach cramps which forced her to quit early. It had been a journey for her and she’d learnt a lot about herself in this adversity and was determined to come back stronger for having failed. I questioned whether this was failure, whether pushing yourself to these limits and having to say enough is enough was not unreasonable.
But what can you say to people in these situations? Are they going to feel any less disappointed for your platitudes? The greatest critic these people have are themselves and you know they’ll come through it in their own time.
So, this past week I learnt a lot myself and as both of these people phrased it “shit happens”!