By Nick Nunn
It has been a tough week for most of the sports fans in the area.
The Braves were booted out of the playoffs a little over a week ago. UGA lost, Tech lost, and Morgan County’s JV and varsity football teams lost.
In fact, one of the only teams that didn’t suffer a loss in the last week was the Morgan County Middle School football team, who will be going into the Piedmont Athletic Conference playoffs undefeated.
We’ve all had the opportunity to lose in our lives and, fortunately, most of us have been spared the eye of the public when we either come up just a bit short or completely crash and burn in our own personal or private lives.
Every once in a while, the average, everyday person will have to undergo a scene of public embarrassment that could rival anything a creative sitcom writer could come up with, but those moments are relatively uncommon.
However, for athletes and sports teams, the chance that their biggest mistakes will end up being seen by dozens, hundreds or thousands of people is just about 100 percent.
Each and every athlete out there, from the third-string lineman on a junior varsity team to the quarterback of a professional organization, takes that chance each and every time they enter the boundary lines of the game and, most of the time, they set aside their pride and sense of personal embarrassment to make sure they are giving everything they can for the good of the team.
In our private lives, how often do we make that commitment, even for our own personal good? When we sense the possibility of failure, many times we shrink back and refuse to invest ourselves totally in the chance we are about to take.
The athlete, on the other hand, cannot give any less than their total effort without dramatically increasing the chance of failure.
But they continue to put themselves out there and, if they are open to the experience, they can learn some of life’s great lessons by taking every chance on the field.
They will learn to lose and, in doing so, learn to accept the possibility of failure and how to continue on in the face of that possibility.
There are some losses that are simply inevitable; some losses that you can’t even see coming; and, sometimes, there are losses that are completely your fault.
Each can teach you how to prepare yourself for the fall and how to get yourself back up and dust yourself off.
And it’s a great thing to know how to get back up.
In the words of Paul Simon, “Before you learn to fly, learn how to fall.”