By: Mystique Ro
The year 2019 is playing out its final scenes and leaves us with a decade’s worth of memories to reflect on. In this overview, we take in the peaks and valleys of our successes and failures in business, education, relationships, and dreams. We can’t always win, but the fear of failure and allowing it to consume us prevents us from pursuing our destiny. Even taking a moment to think back on how we started, how we managed the middle and close out the decade can be quite humbling.
Ten years ago, I myself was merely a sophomore in high school. Having made the tough decision to give up playing the trumpet in an effort to focus more on my athletic development as a track and field multi. The sole goal and prompting came from my mother, who encouraged me to take it seriously so that I could get a scholarship. The remainder of high school was a confusing time period, a time where I searched high and low for my identity. I desperately searched for any semblance of cause and to believe I was alright with who was inside of me.
Five years ago, I was in the middle of my junior year of college at a small private University in Charlotte North Carolina competing in my final seasons as a track and field athlete. I had struggled in my early years of college to keep my humanity and not fall into a statistic driven despair. I nearly drove myself into a madness derived in grief because I worked so hard to be what I deemed was the best version of myself, to only receive the backhand life offered those who sought better for themselves. Yet I kept trekking on.
This New Years’ Eve I find myself ranked number seven on the United States Skeleton Team, developing two very different businesses that highlight artesian creativity, drafting two books and working to rebuild familial ties. By no means do I condone the hardships that I experienced or aim to romanticize the near-tragedy that became of them. Instead, I highlight the human spirit and its desire to not only survive but to thrive. In this age where millions of stories go viral and are shared worldwide, it’s hard not to be inspired by the tenacity of other humans doing wonderous things. If I learned nothing else from this decade, it’s that the human spirit is a powerful force and it would be a shame to not do right by the world in using it for the goodness and inspiration of others.