I played horribly at mixed doubles. Not a little bit bad, but a hot mess of missing balls, double faults and standing flatfooted while the ball whizzed past my forehand. My partners were all nice enough to say, “That’s okay, we’ll get them next time.”
The reality is that it’s not okay. I’m in it to win, I’m competitive and I don’t mind losing, but I need to lose knowing that I’ve given it my all.
I played crummy tennis because I played their game. I’ll never get better if I keep dancing around my backhand. I got so distracted by the other guy’s speed on the ball that I was afraid to play the net. I’m good at the net. I’m not the tallest girl in town, but I’m fast and (with the exception of last Friday) I’m fearless. When I stopped playing my game and started playing his, I lost the set.
I consistently lose when I’m on the defensive; both on the tennis court, and in every other aspect of my life.
I’m weird, we all are. I get a little weirder each year, and I’m less likely to hide my delight or contempt. I have mixed feelings about blogging, because with a year of having my name on what I do, I find myself tempering my speech, and I don’t like that. It’s playing your game, and really, you’re the only one who is any good at your game.
Recently I almost had the opportunity to do some work for a company I really like and believe in. The phone call came, and she was apologetic, “We love you, we really do, but they’re afraid of the marijuana stuff.” I spent the next day thinking about taking down all references to legalizing marijuana for everyone, but then I realized that not every marriage is a good one. I live in California, where luckily folks who are suffering can get the cannabis they require, hopefully, before my children are curious about it, dispensaries will be for everyone over 18 (or 21) and I won’t have to worry about my kids and their friends trying to find a drug dealer. I can’t make myself more attractive to this brand just so we can spend a short time together, it’s simply not a tenable situation.
I could also stop screaming about the food industry. I could make a lot of money selling you frankenfood on my blog. Then, I could make tons more being the spokesperson for the newest diabetes breakthroughs, because the world is fat. I don’t want to be that person. I have to be true to myself and do things the way I know is right. Food isn’t branded, it just is, there is milk and meat, fish and grains as well as fruits and vegetables. If you want a packaged 100 calorie snack eat a banana. If the doctor has used the term obesity when talking about you or your children, get help now. It’s not about feeling good at any size, it’s about living well.
This is my forum and my voice, I’m not running around my backhand, I’m not playing anyone else’s game.
There is no part of my life where I’ll be on the defensive, that’s just not a life worth living.
I love you!! You tell it like it is (and on the money 100% of the time) and accept yourself for who you are, flaws and all. Don’t ever change who you are to please others…
Well said, Jessica. And props for being true to you.
You rock, Jessica! Always an inspiration and I love how you don’t hide behind a pseudonym. It’s so easy to hide behind a fake name or identity on the internet (heck, I do it now, but will be changing that in due time) and say whatever you want. It takes real cajones to put your true self (and opinions) out there!
Keep fighting the good fight!
When you start thinking about what other people are thinking it’s all over! Not only do you slowly erode yourself but you don’t really give other people the opportunity to make up their own mind. But it’s a lot easier said than done – good for you!
And this is why I respect you. Good on you.