On Moving on.

David here making a funny pose during my very first decathlon. So thankful for him and his family for offering transport and helping me out with the logistics.

Had a chat today with one of my fellow decathletes, found out that he’s gotten a full time job and will be moving on in January.

It makes me kinda sad because I know that it’s the inevitable. Someday, perhaps in the not too distant future, I know it would be my turn to bid this farewell too.

Dave was the first decathlete I’ve ever met in person and he helped me out massively during my first decathlon at woodford last year. He’s actually graduated from university last year but he did what a lot of other athletes do, worked simple jobs just to be around and continue training. I guess he decided that it’s time for him to move on too.

It makes me kinda sad because he’s the second of the group who has left/will be leaving soon. Max my ex-training partner left in September and I haven’t seen him much since. I just know that whenever this happens another dream has been laid to rest.

It makes me kinda sad because I realised Dave was actually about half a year younger than me. I’m afraid I’m no longer a young man full of unlimited potential in front of me. Time has passed faster than I though.

I guess one of the reasons why I’m pushing so hard this year is because I know that I’m already on borrowed time. Borrowed time in the sense that when I first started out this journey, I planned to become a good enough decathlete in 3 years to justify one more year of full time training to get to the Olympics. If not I thought I’ll head home at the end of the third.

I didn’t become a good enough decathlete after 3 years and even up till today I’m still not.

I think I mentioned before that the guys back home want me to train and prepare for the 2013 SEA games and beyond, but somehow I feel that those are not my races to run.

I guess my race was never really about winning medals or qualifying for international events, but rather it was just about conquering the self-doubt that I had after I let myself down in the army. I wanted to prove to myself that I could go the distance, stand toe to toe with the best in the world and not back down in the face of overwhelming odds.

And in 2012 when all is said and done, in my heart of hearts I’ll know that I’ve given my everything to a worthy cause, that I had mastered my mind and my body, that I was able to push past pain and rise above my limits, that I am a man of commitment and conviction.

And when I finally get back home, I’m not sure if I want anyone else to go through what I had to, it’s a little hard to explain but whilst I do whole heartily believe that everyone should give their dream a shot, I’m not prepared to subject anyone else to what I had to go through.

One of my Singaporean juniors came to Loughborough as well to pursue her dreams of becoming a great pole vaulter, but after 9 weeks I can see the frustration and self-doubt building. I somehow feel a little responsible for her because I probably did influenced her decision on coming to Loughborough Uni. I tried my best to make it clear before she came that it’s not going to be easy, but I guess you can never fully explain how hard it really is.

When you stand up to a world stage, you realised that perhaps you were just a slightly bigger fish in a really small pond. And that in this ocean of wasted dreams, you are very likely to get swept along.

But all this talk is irrelevant, because one of the most important lessons that I learnt through these years is captured in this picture below.

Everything else is unnecessary worry.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference. – Serenity Prayer

I’m not a religious man, but I appreciate the beauty in good wisdom.

When my time comes, I promise that I’ll have the strength to let go.

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