The Threshold to the Gorilla


Counting today, there are only 8 days left before the moment of truth. However, it will be more than a moment, it will the beginning of 14hrs of truth, reality, adrenaline and exertion. But for Maridee, before her big test begins, there will be a marathon of moments she must pass through to reach the beginning of her day’s destination.

We have entered the final stage of preparation and crossed the threshold that spans the physical and the psychological. The weeks and months of physical training are behind us. We have followed our plan religiously, relentlessly. The momentum created by our training routines has shifted. Now what?

For many of the athletes, the countdown will be the biggest challenge. You can chat with your friends, or try to immerse yourself in social activities, but you’re going to be detached from these interactions because of the 900lb gorilla in your head. You can lay low, read or watch TV. But that won’t make it go away. It’s going to be 8 long days of dealing with it.

Maridee says, “This is the time you get into your head and discuss all the variables with yourself.” Her comment provides insight, but little relief for the collective anxiety we are all feeling. This is time of courage. The time of resolve. When we walk the tightrope over the abyss of the unknown.

“Stay calm and don’t let doubt into your mind.” Maridee’s advice bodes well for all of us. Even as a spectator, I’ll have to take up knitting, crossword puzzles or online poker to try to drown out the antsy anticipation. Good luck to all of the athletes. We’ll be thinking of you – but not too much.

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