It was in the school playground that Marian realised, she sucked at sports. She could never win any race.
The games teacher dissed her, called her a snail, a tortoise, and pushed her softly addressing her as a slow coach. The others sneered at her humiliation.
But Marian was determined. She gave it her best. At every annual race. She volunteered to sign up for the running race competition.
Her classmates giggled at her optimism. The games teacher was astounded. Marian stood her ground.
The games teacher wrote the names diligently but when it came to Marian. She dropped her pen on the sheet of paper and with steely eyes looked up at Marian.
Marian lowered her eyes as she stood the test of perseverance between judgement and self.
As Marian stood her ground, she gave a side-long glance towards her best friend Anne. Anne was a very average, unpopular student. Marian’s best friend.
It was a strange, unspoken understanding among the school girls. The class failures, poor and unpopular ones flocked together. It was like a bunch of birds in the Arctic that used the warmth of one other to overcome the biting cold.
Anne had glasses, bucktooth, a long face with a button nose on which rested her glasses. Anne smiled at her. For Marian that was her reassurance.
She stood silently like the rock looking down at the page with the ink of names. The games teacher just shook her head, reluctantly wrote Marian. Marian gently said thank you.
Anne asked Marian “why are you so stubborn? “ Marian hugged her best friend and whispered, “ Anne it’s not about the race, it’s about the ability to keep doing what I hate”.
Anne looked puzzled.
Marian said “my nanny hated to run, but did what she hated the most like a routine.
Anne said, “yes I hate waking up in the morning”.
Marian said, “try it, Anne, it will feel good to conquer what you hate”.
Marian never won any race. She was slowly inch by inch trying to win over herself.
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