If asked what I would do if money wasn’t a concern, my answer would have varied at different points in my life. At times, I might have said traveling the world, becoming an off-piste mountain guide, or being the DJ who can tear up the dance floor. Each dream reflects a unique phase of my life, and each one has been a burning passion for me.

When I want something, I pursue it. My determination is strong, and I’ve dedicated significant time and energy to my goals. The confidence and grit I’ve gained from this will remain with me forever.

However, pouring so much energy into one thing can cause other areas of life to be overlooked. For me, it was understanding what makes me human. I learned to be brave, compassionate, and real. I began to recognize my strengths, confront my insecurities, and most importantly, started to love myself. I’ve made progress in reshaping the narrative I tell myself about who I am.

You might wonder why I’m sharing all of this in relation to my decision to write again. Five years ago, I had the idea to share my writing. I was passionate about it and even built this website, but for years, I struggled to put my work out there. I feared judgment, upsetting people, and doubted my writing skills.

My hesitation was less about what I needed and more about how others would perceive me or feeling “not enough”. But I needed to overcome this fear to be true to myself. A year ago, I finally finished writing about my journey and accomplishments in swimming, a topic that I had been struggling to put into an essay for years. I struggled to organize the story into something coherent, but once completed, the agony gave way to a sense of catharsis. It was then I realized the therapeutic power of writing.

As I grow older, I want to continue channeling most of my life energy on things that bring me joy. Given the reduced time and energy to explore various interests and the growing commitments that require long-term investment, such as raising a family, I need to be deliberate about what I choose to pursue and what I let go. I hope that creating narratives from transformative experiences can bring clarity. My writing may be rough initially, but I believe it will improve with time. I must allow myself the freedom to be imperfect and share what I’ve observed and learned.

A friend from the Camino de Santiago said a man should plant a tree, have a child, and write a book before he dies. This is a small step towards that goal.