An Athlete State of Mind.

Athlete. Sportsperson. Active minded individual.

Elite. Grass roots. Beginner. It all counts. They are the special breads of humans, in my opinion. How do I know this? Because fortunately been surrounded by them for twenty years of my life. And have earned the honour of representing my country, in turn calling myself one of the above.

I am grateful sport chose me early on. I experienced the joy of playing multiple disciplines, for many years, multiple teams. Teaching me multiple life lessons, early on. For my parents, who drive me to countless practices, countless venues country-wide and multiple amounts of money, on supporting all of this. Supporting My Dream.

I’ve experienced some incredible, unforgettable highs From This sport. From the track. Moments you’d always dreamt of. Movie-moments.

Where it’s not necessarily the medal around your neck. But it’s the atmosphere. Its the feeling of pushing your body, to move the fastest it’s ever been, with every contraction. The ‘YES.’ Moments. Where every training session is being put to use, just to run that self satisfying 0.04 seconds faster your body has moved, than ever before. It’s the crowd’s roar.

Its the lights. It’s the architecture of the stadium. It’s the people volunteering their time to put on a race for you. The way a competitor quickly becomes a mate once the race is done. In the camaraderie of the hand- shake, post race. Picking one another rod the track with a pat on the back. Where you’re out of breath but you always, without fail, acknowledge your opponents that competed against you.

You thank the officials recording the event. And you quietly thank God. It’s the people you encounter, that you’ve never met, but they quietly acknowledge you. Your performance out there, with a simple nod or passing smile.

It’s the honour of the colours you’re wearing. Whether it be Club, state or national. It’s patriotism. Making someone out there proud. Making you proud.

It’s that feeling. I can’t put a finger on it…It’s the moments when you proved to yourself you could and you never stopped. Overcoming mental, physical and emotional hurdles in the process. The lost-for-words moments, when it all went your way. You simply can’t describe it. But you smile. Inside out. Grateful for the journey. Grateful for the people around you. The feeling of adrenaline, mixed with pure joy, mixed triumph and a whole lot of serotonin. The feeling that helped you fall in love with the sport. Just pure happy. The I’m ‘how bloody good is running,’ feeling.

I’ve also experienced the Lows. The moments when you didn’t think you could make it to the line. The moments when your body gave up on itself, before you got to be line. The moments of self doubt in pre-race nerves. The moment of pain, more than any physical injury pain. But pain in being told you’re not allowed to compete, due to injury. When you’d worked so hard to prove to yourself you could; your body simply said ‘no.’

The sacrifices. The people that just don’t get it and blame you, because they don’t understand your passion. They don’t understand your why Your way of life. That this isn’t a choice anymore – it’s a compulsion. The moments of ‘is it all really worth it?…’

But they’re all part of it. Positive and negative. The good comes with the bad. It allows you to work harder, for that brief little high. And it allows you to well and truly earn it!

The bouncing back part. The part that teaches resilience that cannot be taught in an office. Can only be taught on that ‘Oval Office,’ the track. The field. The pitch. The court.

I owe a lot to Sport. It has shaped the person who I am today. Introduced me to a whole new world, to some incredible people who have become family. Kept my physical body just as healthy as my emotional and physical body. It’s been an outlet that saved me from myself, in dark times. It’s given me goals, dreams behind my wildest imagination. And some of the happiest days of my memories.

There’s nothing like proving to yourself, that you are good enough. Exceed your own expectations, but adhering to the journey that you ultimately planned for yourself, for daring to dream in the first place.

I’ve been fortunate to have traveled to some incredible places, met some beautiful faces. And learned wherever there’s a track – there’s home, to me.

From The harsh winters of USA, Canada and England. To the overbearing humidity of training in Cambodia, Thailand, Fiji, The Cook Islands and behind; I’ve found my peace on that track. I it’s a place of ‘me’ time, my outlet. And a place I decide my future.

Most recently I was training in the United Kingdom for a period of about four weeks. It was winter there, when I didn’t have my coach. I didn’t have my squad bantering with me. Just myself, 3 degree icy winds, about seven layers of clothing, and an orange tartan stadium, layed before me. The same surface, as back home. But with a whole new set of obstacles and metaphorical hurdles.

Lungs tight, breathing painful. Hands frozen without gloves. Questioning one’s own sanity, rep after rep. And legs on fire! But this was part of it all. No excuses. I choose this, willingly. And continue to, no mater the country, no matter the conditions.

I decided a long time ago, my destiny. That I would prove to myself that I want to take myself to as far as I can physically go with this sport. I want to be an Olympian.

And it’s been eighteen bloody years, but I certainly haven’t given up yet! As a seven year old, watching our local legend. The phenomenal Cathy Freeman compete for our country. She not only competed, but she won the 400m, at the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games. Witnessing that moment, is where it all started. The Passion, if you will.

I said to my little self, watching in awe. Eyes glued to that television screen. Her body in moving so swiftly. Her pain in her face, in digging deeper than ever before. Her humility in her triumph and success. I wanted that. I said there and then, I am going to do that with my life one day. And I will.

And of course it hasn’t been smooth sailing. I’ve had multiple injury, illness and misfortune. They’ve been multiple coaches, politics, those ups and downs. But it’s all been worth it. It’s part of the Journey To The Dream, as I’ve always called it.

I certainly haven’t been able to keep going this far, alone. I’ve had the most phenomenal team behind me. My family, supporting each and every one of my crazy dreams. In driving me and flying me around the country and in turn the world – to support my dreams. Financially supporting me, emotionally supporting me. And physically being there to support me, whenever they can. And never saying, never to my next step.

My partner, in all his support. His unconditional support, in every definition. Not only being there, cheering louder than any voice in the stadium and being proud of it. Mentally challenging me to push myself, past all my fears. Beyond my dreams. And never doubting me, my decisions or my big dreams. Not even for a second.

My friends in understanding why I have to miss that party, again. Can’t see them on competition weekends, or miss birthdays and anniversaries due to training.

And my coaches. These special people that see more potential in me than I see in myself and continue to push me, beyond my limitations. And all the glorious, countless, beautiful people. The behind the scenes people. The acquaintances, the family friends. But also the therapists, the doctors, the supporters and people that have invested in me, that believe in This Journey.

The track continues to, and will always be my light. I haven’t given up on that goal, since. Although it may have changed slightly. I am more determined. More willing. More hungry for my goal.

Because I chose to go to that level. The ‘one percenters,’ the extras. The above and beyond. Because that’s what all adds up. It’s going to that that all and much much more! The sessions that don’t make sense, everything hurts, your mind is fighting your body – but you do it anyway, because it brings you one step closer. One step ahead of the game.

I have a goal, not dream. Because a goal without a vision is a dream.

Never give in to expeditions set by someone else for your future. You are your own guiding light.

Chose to go to your level for your goal. And keep going; For your seven year old self.

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Airport Pleasantries

The Welcome:

You anticipate the alarm. Every hour jumping out of your skin, checking the clock. Again and again. Because you can’t be late.

This is THE day, circled on the calendar. Finally, THE day. The countdown is over.

You’ve waited 5 months for this. That’s 159 days. 3,600 hours since you’ve seen His face.

It’s 5am, but your make-up HAS to be perfect. You can’t possibly have a stray hair. Did you shave your legs?Is your hair perfectly straight? Will he notice this contour? Hurry up, dammit or you’ll be late!

The commute to the airport is a cocktail of emotion. Listening to happy songs. Feels songs. Gangsta rap songs.

I can hear my Heartbeat in my head. Traffic. Shit!

You speed. Gosh, I Hope there’s no cops. Can’t afford a fine.

The Airport car park nightmare..
Round and round and round.

Level after level!

Just give me a spot!

Got one!

Shit, can’t lose the ticket!

It’s time.

You sprint to the Arrivals gate. Literally sprint in thongs (like a true Aussie).
The plane is late.

He hasn’t contacted you.

So you wait.

The front of the line so you don’t miss him.

Watching every single person walking out of customs until you lock eyes with his.

You observe.

You heart racing.

Leg starting to shake with adrenaline.

You don’t want to miss this moment.

Ten minuets. Then fifteen. Twenty.

Damn, where is he?

Is something wrong?
You notice something magical about airport arrivals.

Everyone is waiting for their someone.

A loved one. A family member. A client. A business partner. A customer.

A long lost love.
Wave after wave of people.

People all looking to lock eyes with their own someone.

The person they’re anticipating.
Man. I need to wee!

Am I going to be sick?

Where the hell is he!

Why won’t my leg stop shaking.

You giggle.

It feels like I’ve been on the ‘Big Drop’ at Dreamworlds ten times over.
Then another wave of people.

Your heart drops.

It’s HIM!

Eeeeee!
He’s seen you! And you give each other THAT look.

My heart is so happy.

I’m shaking all over.
You rush over to see him. To feel him. To

Embrace him. To smell him!

But not quite yet…
People won’t move.

Move out of the f*%!ng way!

How can you Walk so slow!

I have road rage while walking.
I’m the middle of the walkway he drops his bags.

I wrap my Legs around his waist and burry my face in his chest.

He’s here! He’s really, Actually here! He’s home!

A rush of warmth encompasses your body and fills your chest. I’m sweating.

We kiss.

Kiss deeply.

In a room full of people, we are the only two that matter.

Time passes. Still kissing. Just holding one another.

We realise we are causing a scene.

And all is well in the world again.

You feel whole. You feel safe. Your heart is glad. And nothing else seems hard anymore. Nothing else matters.

We move out of the way. Our to the car. And can’t keep our hands off one another. We begin our lives together, once again!
Until the airport farewell.

The farewell:
The Farewell is something dark.

Like out of a cruel, bad ending to a chick flick where someone dies.

Something I dread every single time.

Because when ‘Home’ goes from a place, to a person.

When they’re not here, you don’t feel right.

Nothing makes sense.

You feel lost. Your puzzle piece is floating somewhere, in another land far away.
I’ve realised The Goodbye doesn’t seem as daunting each time over.

But it has a harsh way of hitting you all at once.

The car ride is normal, we sing. We reminisce. Until Google Maps tells you you’re 5 mins away and then that lump on your throat gets bigger and bigger. And you can’t hold the tears any longer.

Pulling into the departures gate.

‘Drop off only.’
Let’s make it quick so it doesn’t hurt so much. Like a band-aid.

But no.

Each time a little piece of me breaks.

Each time he flies away, or I fly away. My soul aches.
we embrace. And then when I think it’s our last hug. We embrace again. And again. don’t want to let him go.

His eyes don’t want to let me go.

I feel the lump in my throat.

And then my eyes are wet. My face is wet.

I burry my face in his chest.

His eyes reciprocate mine.

And we both sob. Just sob.

Sob for the fact we won’t wake up next to one another tomorrow.

Or for a few more tomorrows.
For the little insignificant life-moments – that you remember most.

That make it all Worth it.

The highs that amount to a greater joy, than any of the lows.

The moments that confirm, they are everything your world needs, wants and can’t live without.

The feeling you crave most of simple being in each other’s arms, presence. The same postcode!
But the goodbye, never gets easier.

It’s the ‘I’ll see you soon,” we hold close.

The last sob. The last kiss. The last look in their eyes. Through the pain, through the tears.

The look I remember most vividly in my Dreams, That let’s you know one day – it’ll all be okay.

One day it will all make sense.

It freaking sucks.

And hurts. Hurts real bad. Like no physical pain you have ever been exposed to. No wound comparable.

Long distance, is just mileage.
It doesn’t matter when the person you are farewelling, will be your favourite hello for the rest of your days.

I’ll hold onto The Promise in his eyes.

Until next time…

Your Real Meaning of Christmas

This holiday season, it’s very easy to get caught up in the commercialised side of Christmas, materialism and spending. It’s easy to lose sight of what’s important. I’ve seen so many people get so stressed about who they need big gifts for and how much they’re spending. Rather than simply, why we are buying gifts in the first place.

You can very easily Lose sight of what Christmas really means to you. It might be along the lines of. Family time. Reunions. Giving. Or The CHRIST in Christmas.


I would encourage you, this Christmas time to take a moment to simply think about what Christmas might mean to someone like this little girl. I had the joy of meeting in Cambodia. She may look happy, dressed and in good health. But she is Living in an improvised community. Her parents might not earn more than $AU 70c per day. Which is enough to get by, to put rice on the table. By Christmas would certainly look very different from ours.

I have no doubts, her smile would remain the brightest little grin; I’ve ever seen. Her attitude would still be carefree. She would not know the feeling of seeing wrapping paper and presents under a tree. Or a santa sack on the end of her bed.

Christmas might simply be another day to her. With added silly songs about a fat man in a suit.

These people are strong. Even though they live in destitution; they are happy with their simple way of living. They have enough to live and learn. And they don’t complain or think ‘why me.’ They do their best to provide a future for their families.  And realised they are blessed with what little they have.

I encourage you, and your family to never take your situation for granted. Some people are praying for what you have. And what you have, could very well be enough.

Take care, be grateful and be safe his Christmas and hold your loved ones close.