Awakening Your Inner Champion – The Fighting Spirit

Black and white fine art portrait of a female boxer looking like she just lost a fight, Inside old Santa Fe prison, Santa Fe, New Mexico
BoxerSheLostNo1, originally uploaded by carolsLittleWorld.

This is one of the images I had shot a while back inside of the Santa Fe old jail cells. I’ve kind of always liked shooting these kind of shots because, well, it’s clear she just lost a fight, isn’t it?

On the subject of losing, doing battles and all, I should also point out that today I submitted a large portfolio for review. It’s one of those things, I know I’m not going to get the opportunity but I just could not help myself, I had to try. It’s a fight, it’s a struggle to always move ahead with your work, really it is. I like to think that I’m a contender even if I don’t always show them my fancy footwork. I tried. Heck, at least today I feel like I’ve tried, even if I don’t get the gold star or the spiffy podium finish.

This morning, while waiting in line at the Post Office (to mail out my oh-so-large portfolio, you know, the one which will never get accepted) I was checking my phone. On the phone was a story about a girl who lost a race. She had been competing in a track and field event and was winning actually, she was clearly out in front. One of her competitors fell and, instead of finishing the race, she stopped to help. Instead of coming in first, as she was slated and capable of doing, she came in dead last because, well, because she stopped to help. The story was about how, unknowingly, somebody had filmed her doing this and now she has become a local hero (of sorts.) At the end of the race, she received a big cheer and now the papers, the news was reporting how “she came in first by coming in last.” This was kind of encouraging to me to read while waiting in line there, waiting at the Post Office, sending out something I know I will never get, but feeling quite like I had to try anyway.

Being an athlete, being a photographer, doing whatever it is that you do, sometimes you’ll be lucky and win one but, other times? You’re just lucky to be in the running at all, let alone think you can finish first. Or, to put it another way, you can’t win them all. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try, right? Part of being an athlete is learning how to come in last and to stick with it. “You’ll get ’em next time” and all.

So, with that said, this might be a good time to tell you something else. See the lady in the photo? Remember how I said she looks like she just lost (I’m sure you probably think that, I mean, it’s the pose and all, right?) Turns out she’s actually (in real life, she wasn’t “faking it” for this shot) a champion boxer with a very good record. So, yes, our “lady loser” as it were, is actually quite the winner. She’s a champion, although you might not have guessed that by this image.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m sure she’s lost before. I’m sure, somewhere in her long career of knock outs, scuffles, and whatever else it is boxers do, I’m sure she’s lost a bout or two. Heck, probably more than one. I’m sure she lost, got up, tried, and lost again. But, somewhere along the line, something happened. She started winning. Then she started winning big. Then she got lots of medals, adoration, and a stellar record. My point here is that everybody starts out a beginner and isn’t quite “good enough.” There will be battles you will just take it on the chin. Get up, take more on the chin. Try harder, fail harder. Eventually, with a little luck, a lot of work, and maybe a little practice, you just might win one.

The lady in the picture? Yeah, she didn’t get to be a champion boxer by sitting on the stool in the sidelines. She tried, she failed, she tried harder, she failed more until, eventually, she won. She’s got this, even if it looks like she’s down and out.

Have you sent your portfolio out today? Why not? What are you waiting for? Perhaps a little stool by the side of the ring to call your own? Do you really need me to tell you, “go on! You’ll get ’em next time?”

Until next time…


  1. Great Grandma Lin
    June 5, 2012 / 10:47 pm

    good advice…I can use it for upcoming poetry contests…to try again and again.

  2. Carol
    June 13, 2012 / 11:38 pm

    Thanks, yes, it's try, try, and try again. You never know what's going to hit.

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