"You know, you can take a good mule up in the mountains, and the mule will do a lot of work for you. But when a mule gets tired, it will stop. You can push it, you can pull it, and you can motivate it with a stick, but until it has recovered it will go nowhere. But, if you have a good horse, you can run with that horse until it drops over, completely exhausted or dead. Today you ran like a horse." Coach James as quoted in BYU Magazine, "Run Like a Horse". Winter 2016
I was so inspired as I read this article written by a great BYU track coach, Edward Eyestone.
This was a parable told to Ed after he dropped of heat exhaustion in a race, failing to qualify as All American something he has spent a year training for.
Coach Eyestone went on to say, "That made me feel better-- the fact that he thought I had given it that kind of effort. I think what my good mentor Coach James taught me at that time was that life is structured such that many times we are going to do everything possible to accomplish our goals, but the nature of life is that sometimes, despite doing all the right things, we are going to come up a little short. But if we have done everything in our power- if we have run like a horse- then that is all that is required. We can hold our heads high. We're going to accomplish a lot in the process."
"I made All-American 10 times after my mission, but the fact is, I don't cherish or remember those 10 times I had success nearly as much as the one time I came close and Coach James said I ran like a horse. We often learn more from our so-called failures than from our successes."
I'm not sure why this story healed a part of my soul this morning. But I found in this example a sense of pride in weakness and fatigue that has helped to heal the guilt all good mothers feel as we notice our capacity is not as great as our desire to serve.
We are mothers.
We run like horses.
We love, we serve, we train.
We win some and we loose some.
We try again.
And, I'm proud of that.
I just know that our coach is smiling even on days we fall short of All American.
Happy Easter friends.
Life is good.