Imagine you’re a gardener. You turn the soil; you sow the seeds. You tend and care to your precious plants until they bloom into beautiful flowers which you can prune and proudly prepare for a summer of shows and beauty where all your hard work pays off. You love your garden.
Or maybe you don’t have the greenest of fingers…
So imagine you’re an architect. Weeks, months and years of designing, thinking, planning and hard work. All for the sake of projects which you and your building team enjoy each developing until you have a community and a portfolio of structures to remind you of the time, effort and value you put into each and every one.
…But perhaps buildings aren’t your project of choice.
Either way- green fingers or builders bum- I’m sure you can relate to the great feeling of hard work and enjoyment from the jobs, hobbies and passions we throw ourselves into in this little picture of life we paint for ourselves.
My family and I have been gymnastics coaches for a long time now, starting as gymnasts, progressing to volunteer coaches and eventually being a part of a coaching team and effectively building up a club and community where over 350 gymnasts can enjoy and develop the beautiful sport that is gymnastics. It’s clear to me and most who know me that gymnastics is a big part of mine and my family’s life. Recent events therefore have led to a disruption of this passion of ours. Change is never an easy thing- especially when you don’t see it coming. Sudden, unexplained and unjust.
So imagine you are a gardener. You sow your seeds, you tend to your blooming garden but then suddenly your landlord comes and kicks up the dirt, cuts all the tops of your flowers and takes your gardening gloves away.
As an architect you have scrupulously planned to build your envisioned structure and community. Your well prepared project is underway and you can’t wait to tell the people of your new-built town that further development is soon to be arriving. In fact, there are keen future inhabitants lining up to move in too. They wish to admire and utilise your hard work, as much as you wish to offer it. But then suddenly all your buildings are locked, the streets are taped off and no more planning permission is granted. The residents are forced to move out with no explanation.
...is this becoming clear?
So as gymnastics coaches, we have spent years of working hard at planning, organising and running a club where we got to know, develop and cherish each of our gymnasts. To have that suddenly and unjustly taken away with no explanation has led us to feel all our flames of passion put out and put down. Even the embers of the young aspiring athletes who were all so ready to ignite.
But whatever way I spin it- a gardener, an architect, a gymnast or a gymnastics coach- I’m sure you can imagine the kinds of unsettling hurt and confusion we are all sadly feeling. I can only hope that, like the classic tale of the Phoenix, we can rise from the ashes. Tenaciously sweep the grey debris from our own, and each other’s feathers and squawk with a sassy swag as we fly away from those that try to tear up our turf or tear down our town.