My evolution as a climber and a person, passed through envy.
For some time in the past - and I'm sure there are many traces of it in this blog - I've been envious. Envious of those who could go climbing, those who could climb the problems that I wanted to climb, those who could reap the rewards of the training they'd been doing.
It was horrible.
Let me talk about envy. Envy is a bad beast. To the contrary of what many may think, envy is a judgement. When we envy someone, we judge that person: we think that they don't deserve what they have, and that somehow in doing so they detract something from us, something that should belong to us.
So, envy is a lot more than we're used to think.
When I was envying my friends who could climb lots, my thoughts were along these lines, even though I didn't realize it and, had I realized, I would have enever admitted:
"I'm envious because they can climb the problems that I can't try. They climb them just because they have the time to stick at them. They're not as strong as I am. They're just more lucky in having more time and more opportunities. They don't deserve those climbs, I deserve them because I put in a lot more effort and dedication than they do." I could go on forever.
The sense of frustration that comes with this kind of thinking need not to be mentioned.
I don't know how things changed.
I think that I had to go through a complete chaos to finally emerge on the other side. I had to question not only my climbing, but every aspect of my life, and how every aspect of my life had been affected, for good or bad, by climbing.
It took me a lot of time to finally bury the hatchet with climbing, and this came with an added bonus: my envy had gone. I can feel it trying to raise its ugly head at times, but it's just the shadow of what it used to be.
I could say that envy became something different: it became the knowledge that my life is different from my friends' lives, and from anyone else's life.
Years and years to come to this conclusion. Ha!
I exchanged climbing for training, and finally found some kind of peace. Others may have time, I have not. There's nothing to be envious about, that's just how things go. Maybe I also exchanged envy for a little sadness and disappointment, but that's a victory!
I was thinking about it just yesterday evening, right before starting my warm up. Never seeing the opportunity to actually put all the training efforts to good use, makes training really really hard, mentally.
You sow, you sow, you sow, and you don't know when or whether you'll reap.
How do you deal with this?
It's very easy: you either quit sowing, or you keep sowing. Make your choice.