Life as we know is full of decisions, some good, some bad, some easy and some are hard.
Can a decision you made as a child have a major impact on your life today?
Here is my example of a decision I made as a nine year old. The question I have found myself asking lately is, how much impact did this decision have on my life’s journey from that point onward.? Would I have still reached the same results I have now but just on a different pathway?
Ok so what was this major decision? well it was nothing really as far as important life decisions that one has to make, like buying a car or a house etc etc, but it did change what I did at this particular time of the year for the following 2 years.
During the year our school would have their annual sports carnival. All the normal track and field events. This was definitely my favourite time of the year. My specialty was the 100 meter sprint and high jump. Probably due to my extra height I had over other kids in my age group.
Anyway, the 100 meters sprint was where things really happened for me and I was eventually able to go on and compete at zone level and eventually state level. Everything was heaps of fun “and there was a popularity you get to enjoy at school from winning as well”
Once I got to state level I realised later that I was the only kid from my school to make it that far. This started to have a dramatic change in how this made me feel compared to the fun of competing against my friends.
On the day of competition at state level, just before leaving my school to go to QE2 I found out my running teacher wasn’t coming with me, as I was the only kid from our school competing “compared to several kids from my school in the earlier regional zone competitions”.
There was already a teacher from another school with the kids on that day, so my teacher wasn’t required to come with me. This in turn was really starting to have an effect on me, but I wasn’t about to show it yet.
Finally, we get to what used to be called QE2 in Brisbane, which is now called [QSAC] Queensland Sport and Athletics Centre. It was the 1st time I had ever been in a place like that and it was huge, especially compared to the school oval.
I don’t remember a lot about that day except where I sat on a blanket with a bunch of kids I never met before and my disastrous race.
I do however remember just before my race, lining up on the track, and looking at the other kids feeling quietly confident for a good outcome. [At that point in time I never lacked in confidence in winning a 100m race]
Anyway, we take our positions at the starting line and the gunman says his “on your mark get set and BANG”. Oh yeah I thought to myself, I should win this one. After running maybe about 20-30 meters I looked up and realised I was in last place. The kid in first place was what seemed like about a mile in front of me. I knew I couldn’t catch him and I was struggling to even catch the kid just in front of me. [in fact I think I was losing ground on him] This was the momment I made a decision. The emotion of being in last place was to much and I burst into tears and walk off the track. I was a sore loser that day and I carried that attitude with me for the next couple of years.
When the annual school carnivals came around over the next 2 years, I made sure I didn’t put myself in that position again. I purposely came last in all my races. My school running teacher was at a loss to understand why I was doing this, but the grip of fear and what I considered the humiliation of coming last was to much for me to bear. But coming last on purpose was ok as far as I was concerned.
I did however in my last year of primary school, have one last crack at a proper competition running against my main rival. My running teacher rearranged the running fields to make sure the two of us were running against each other and he prompted me to compete and don’t come last.
I decided to except the challenge and win that race, as I expected myself to win it, but I came in 2nd place behind my rival, who wasn’t actually my rival, just my class mate at that time.
This was a shock to me as this was the first time my class mate beat me in proper competition running. This was a dose of reality I wasn’t enjoying and the popularity from winning had long gone and moved onto the next lot of winners. There was a final nail in the coffin once I reached high school.
On the high school carnival day I legitimately wanted to win my race, but I came in a disappointing fourth. Even one of the kids I used to comfortably beat could now sprint past me effortlessly. I don’t remember competing anymore after that.
II spent the last two years trying to fit in with the other kids from high school. I felt like I had lost or thrown away something special I had when I was 9 by making a simple decision not to at least finish my race and worse, not even competing at all.
How much of an effect did walking off the race track that day cause me to take a different pathway compared to doing my best and finishing that race? That one I don’t know, but one thing that track running did get replaced with was music and songwriting. I picked up a guitar for the first time at the age of 17 and this became a new pathway for me to travel on and has helped me during my deepest darkest momments during my late teens and adult life.
Once I reached my late teens and beyond I was struggling to finish most things I started, I lost confidence in myself, went from one bad relationship to another. Did the typical drinking and weed smoking during this time and continued to drift further into a un-seeable dark hole. Struggled with jobs, so money has becoming an issue.
Something happened though once I hit my mid 20’s, God came into my life and gave me a helping hand. I had to make a real decision during this period and I had to stick to it. Good had said to me “follow me or go back from where I got you out from”. That decision is still in action today. I have allowed myself to follow God’s voice to the best of my ability from age 25 to over 50. It continues to be the best decision I have made to this day and the journey since then is my testimony to my belief in him.
These days I have looked back and can see some regrettable decisions I have made, but not all were bad and not all were wrong,
I’ve learned since then to do my best to finish the things/projects I start and don’t concern myself where that places me compared to others.
Some of the first question I wanted answered when God first came into my life was who was this voice, where did it come from and where was it going to take me?
The journey out from my darkness was just as hard though, but I have never let go or quit.
This is something I wrote this morning.
I have lived out enjoyed the “freedoms” of mainstream living, but I got caught in it’s unforeseeable deep dark web of desires. I have now found my home and have turned towards him, allowing God’s gift of freewill to help me untangle and clear my mind one day at a time, while keeping me safe within his circle of light.