Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Good Thing I Didn't Try To Be A Nurse

Forgive me, I'm going to take a moment here to toot my own horn. ;)

On Sunday morning before the race, I was walking down to the swim start and heard Nalani's mom call to me... she wished me luck and we chatted for a few minutes... and during those few minutes she completely managed to make my day. You see, she told me about how happy Nalani has been... how dedicated to her training she is... how much she is enjoying it and wants to succeed not only for herself but for me... I have been coaching Nalani since December and in that time she's made some major improvements in all three sports and it's just really fun to watch. I think in my heart I knew all those things that Nalani's mom was telling me, but to hear the compliments from her was really quite the highlight of my day. I don't think I mentioned this on my race report blog, but Nalani placed 5th OA on Sunday, 1st in her very competitive age group.

The following day, Monday, I spent a good bit of time on the phone with another one of my athletes who had a serious bike crash earlier in the season. She'd been entered in IMCDA and even though she had complete reconstructive surgery on her shoulder because of a grade 5 separation 5 weeks ago, she was still hoping to be able to race in Idaho. She felt very discouraged because so many people were calling her crazy and telling her she couldn't do it... the fact of the matter is that she could do it, if she wanted to... the conflict was that she didn't just want to go finish... she's done that before. This time she wanted a Kona spot. It was a delicate balance on my part, trying to be supportive while also being realistic at the same time... we finally came to the conclusion that she will be better off this year if she re-thinks her goals... so that's what we're going to do. It sucks for her, because she has the talent and the drive and the will and the dedication to really give it a shot, but she's gonna have to wait until she's all 100% healed up so she can train the way she needs to to reach her goals. Before we hung up the phone on Monday night, she told me how much she appreciates being able to talk to me... that she always feels so much better after we get off the phone... that in fact, her boyfriend and her roommates tell her to call me when she's getting down on herself because they have seen her spirits lift after our conversations. Man, that makes me feel good to hear that.

And then yesterday another athlete called in a complete panic ('A' races are coming up soon... 'tis the season for panic!)... 20 minutes later I had talked her down off the ledge and when she was able to breathe again she reiterated some of the same things I'd been hearing from my other athletes over the last few days... that she always feels so much better after talking to me.

So I've been coaching for 6 months now and it appears I am a good fit for the job. :) I have a couple of new athletes coming on board now too which is exciting... I think I may have to cap myself off soon though so I make sure I can still manage everyone appropriately while also starting that Coffees Of Hawaii sales job next week. I'm gonna be a busy mama!

Horn tooting over. Now you know what I'm NOT good at? Being overly empathetic to my husband when he's got a staff infection in his knee and it hurts to walk. I know he really is in pain, but let's be real here. While cleaning up after himself is clearly completely out of the question, somehow he can muster up the energy to get himself the ice cream out of the freezer... I guess I can't help but think that if he were a woman, he would still manage to figure out how to take care of himself and his child even though his knee hurts. Why are women so much better at this kind of thing? Phew. Good thing I didn't try to be a nurse. That is most definitely not my calling. Sorry, Scott.

11 comments:

Rebecca DeWire said...

I am a nurse so I will give your husband some sympathy.I think he just REALLY wanted that ice cream. I hope his infection clears up soon.

I have never had a coach before and the way you describe your interactions sounds like it is a lot of fun to be coached and have someone really looking out for you. Nice job, sounds like you found the perfect fit. And I don't think I have said congrats on your coffee job. That sounds like an exciting opportunity

The Chapples said...

Tooting your horn for you - I've had coaches before and they were very strict about the amount of contact they were open to (i.e., 3 emails a week and one phone call, etc.) and who basically threw a plan at me and said, "Good luck!" Working with you has been a totally different experience! If I ever get back into triathlon, I know you could turn me into a totally different triathlete than I've been before. I'm already a different runner...

Beth said...

Your athletes are lucky to have you! :) Hope Scott's knee feels better soon. I'm pretty sure the ice cream will help. HAHA!

Running and living said...

I always make fun of my husband for being a baby! However, I am lucky because he is one of those rare men that likes to clean and organize.
It must be amazing to have your athletes say such nice things about you. And I have followed Nalani's progress via your blog - amazing improvement! Great coach, I guess:)

X-Country2 said...

If I had the money and time, I'd TOTALLY want you to be my coach too.

Angela and David Kidd said...

Sounds like you are doing great as a coach. No real suprise there!

And I do feel badly for Scott. For some reason after IMoo I kept getting staph infections and had to go to the ER once for one. They are nasty and hurt like hell. At least he isn't making you clean it out for him. Those things ooze some nasty stuff.

Katie A. said...

Go ahead and toot your own horn! You are doing an amazing job with your athletes, that is a nice reward when they are so appreciative.
And you're right, I could also never be a nurse, no paitence for me!

Kiersten said...

I am a Nurse Practitioner- while I have empathy for my patients, my husband would tell you he gets little sympathy. (Much as I love him, he tends to be hit the hardest by illness and injury). You should toot your horn as a coach...mine has talked me down a time or two and it makes a big difference!!!!

Regina said...

I'll toot your horn too. You are an awesome coach. You have delivered me to the start line of my first HIM, it's now up to me to finish the journey. I know I wouldn't be as prepared as I feel I am if I had done this alone. Thank you.

Don't you know? Women are genetically predetermined to be superior multitaskers. We are supremely gifted ;P

Mary IronMatron said...

Okay Michelle--I am so selfish, but when I read about your CDA athlete I was like... oh know. oh know oh know!!! Michelle is coaching her. She is going to come back and that is one more person I have to fight with at CDA ! So I'm relieved! haahahaha! With you coaching her, that was the scary piece...
You are an awesome coach. I am sure of it.
Oh, poor Scott! But think about it--how are little boys treated by their mommies?
that answers your question as to why women seem to tough it out in these situations and just get it done while men have a harder time with that. We watched our moms...we watched them tough it out-- and we watched them coddle are brothers.. (at least I did!)

DC Running Mama said...

Ha--I am totally not sympathetic to my husband, who I think whines a bit too much and too loudly...

Talking people off the wall is an *essential* aspect of coaching:> I'm glad that you've found your little niche in life!