Sometimes, we come up short. Sometimes, we do not win the game or make the sale. Sometimes, we are only close.
But, what does that mean? Being close is not the same as winning. Losing the Super Bowl does not feel as sweet as winning, even if there is confetti raining down on both teams. Was it all for nothing?
There are days when I walk down the subway stairs, feel the wind of the train, run through the ticket machine, and swerve between bikes only to miss the train by five seconds. This feeling feels like the end of the world. Seven minutes! You mean I have to wait another seven minutes? I was only five seconds behind.
Yes, you have to wait. You missed the train. You were close, but now it is gone, and you are still standing on the platform, feeling the wind as the cars woosh by.
But, for every time I just miss the train, I also just make the train, and I try to remind myself that when I am five seconds too late. When I'm close, but not close enough, I remind myself it is ok. My effort though seemingly in vain is fair enough. Sometimes, we are close.
Sometimes, all we can do is show up, to play the game, to give it our best. And when our best is not enough, we know we have to try even harder the next time, or in my case, leave the house five seconds earlier to make it on the train. Because, we only really lose when we give up, when we stop trying.
Sometimes, being close can feel so tough. Rather be a blowout than to taste victory and come up short. But, I would rather be close, even if it is harder to swallow.
Sometimes, we can not control the outcome. Sometimes, things do not go according to plan. But, we can keep trying. We can show up. We can learn from coming up short. We can leave the house five seconds earlier. We can make the train.