The last couple weeks have been quite the whirlwind: the highs of crushing two races - Pigman Sprint & Wyckoff Tri - (plus winning my first race $$ ever! Gotta start somewhere!) and graduating from Chicago Booth, mixed with the lows of the shocking loss of a friend and my grandpa’s failing health.
With so much to report, I was stumped as to what to write. I've had requests for race reports, but with so many other important changes in my life and so many things on my mind, that seemed so.... snore! I couldn't seem to find the inspiration. What seemed more relevant was my reflection upon the last two years.
I am taking so much knowledge and wisdom from my time Booth. But perhaps one of most of the greatest things that Booth has blessed me with was the confidence to embrace and pursue my passion(s) and to know that success will follow. I developed the strength to look beyond the questions we too often think about: What should I do? What can I do? Instead, I took (and continue to take) an honest look within and ask: what do I want to do?
I want to pursue a career in the sport that I love: triathlon. I want to test my limits and see what I can do in the sport. Can I survive – no THRIVE – as a pro? Only time will tell for sure. But I believe that I can, and I owe it to myself to devote myself fully and find out. I want to make an impact by working with organizations, both non- and for-profit, to develop winning strategies and grapple with markets, which are changing more quickly than ever, by leveraging critical thinking and increasingly available data. And I want to combine these two passions – to produce results on the race course and in the boardroom, thus redefining what it means to be a professional/sponsored triathlete.
My parents – being the wonderful, loving parents they are – have expressed concerns about this untraditional path for me. And I keep telling them, “life is long, but life is short!” I have the rest of my life to work at a desk, but only so many years to race at the elite level. And I do believe this. But it took on different, greater meaning when my friend from undergrad and a truly incredible woman – Nina Brekelmans – died unexpectedly in a fire on the night of June 3. She had Facebook-messaged me only days earlier wanting to catch up and hear about my triathlon plans. She had just graduated with a Masters from Georgetown and was heading to the Middle East to pursue research combining two of her passions: endurance running and women’s empowerment. Her sudden death – so utterly out of her control – was a startling reminder to me of just how short life can be.
I'll keep this post short(ish) and leave you with some clips of the highlights from the last few weeks and a reminder: life is short. There is no time to wait. To put off that email you’ve been meaning to send, that call you’ve meant to make to an old friend or family member. It’s too short not to create the life you want for yourself, not to take it by the horns! I look forward to sharing just how I do that as I start this new chapter of my journey! Stay tuned :)