There is nothing more satisfying than seeing the people you love succeed in whatever goal they have set out to pursue. Being married to a triathlete involves just as much commitment to the sport as the triathlete himself. What had started out as a simple hobby and a way to keep fit, has now evolved into a full-blown passion. Over the course of the 8 or so years that Tony has been doing triathlons, I have had my share of endurance training from the sidelines.
Most mornings I wake up to an empty bed and to little noises outside our room. These are signs that Tony’s up and about, getting ready for his morning workout. It is at this point when I am having an argument with myself. The sun is not even up yet and I am trying to decide if I should prepare him some breakfast or should I just stay in bed a little longer until it is “officially morning”. I would often decide on the latter.
Before turning in every night, we usually agree on what would be a good time for him to return from his training just so we can still do things together as a family. It is rare that he is unable to fulfill his promise to be home at a specified hour, but he tends to cut it so close that he barely has time for a bath and a snack before we set out to do our itinerary for the day. He is around when he needs to be. He does his part and he has found a balance. Other tri-wives would consider me rather lucky that I do not feel the need to compete with triathlon for his time and attention. I guess they’re right. The truth is I am not a tri-wife (a triathlete’s wife), but more like a “try-wife” because I am always trying to find ways to be useful to my triathlete husband who rarely ever asks me to do anything for him.
I try to be at the starting line. If only it weren’t so crazy early in the morning! I have imagined myself chasing him down the race route, from start to finish, with my camera in hand while wildly cheering him on. I have had this scene in my head for a while, and I have yet to play it out.
I try to understand triathlon. He speaks about it with much enthusiasm. He sometimes uses words that I do not understand. I listen anyway, nodding here and there–not because I get it–but because I am happy just to see him so happy.
I try to meet all his new friends. Tony has widened his circle of friends through this sport. I happily get dragged into the pre-race or post-race parties that gives me a chance to be around REAL “tri-wives” and “tri-hubbies” too.
I try to stay calm. I cannot help but worry about his safety all the time, whether while he’s training or at the races. Mishaps, injuries and bad luck are never welcome but are all a part of life. It happens to the best of us, even to the best of triathletes. No amount of training can keep these from sometimes happening, and when it does, it takes every ounce of my energy to hold back the words “I told you so.”
I try not to nag. Really, I do.
I try to take many photos. All fumbles and armed with only an iPhone, I take as many photos as I can of Tony during his races. Between jumping in excitement for finally catching a glimpse of him among hundreds of other athletes and wildly cheering him on, my photos tend to be either off-center or blurry. I end up deleting them all.
I try to be at the finish line. Just because I never make it to the starting line.