Life is best lived in unison.
Singing with one of my friends who is easily able to match volume with me, we always managed to hit resonate notes that made all our previous attempts at a full and voluminous sound pale in comparison. When I say loud, I mean loud. We could cheer in a pool and be heard easily 50 m away and occasionally from the bleachers we could be heard by people swimming (usually while they took a breath, but I wouldn’t write us off for being heard under water).
We went to the same church.
It was where I started trying to follow Jesus.
Man we must have annoyed people, but no one ever said anything about the two guys bellowing over the band in the back. It was fun, and uplifting in a way I very seldom experience. There’s only been a few times I’ve found people that match with me like that, and it truly makes all the difference in the world.
My wife’s like that with our family – sure it’s not music, but it means more to me that we can work and live together complementing one another and bringing out the best (and occasionally orneriest bits) of each other.
That’s what I look for in my swimming partners, I don’t really care how fast you are as long as you want to try to challenge me and yourself. Because I’ll do that for you, and hopefully we can resonate and both improve.
I can bang away on sets and work my mind and body to exhaustion. Most of us can. When we get done we undoubtably feel accomplished, like we deserve some accolade. If you’re like me you remember your split times and celebrate a little in your head wishing more people knew what those numbers meant to me.
But when you swim with friends and you get out for breakfast, you can sit around and talk about that set or some other part of your life or some detail that you want to improve in. Even more than that, while you are swimming you can cheer each other on and spur one another towards a little improvement. You can get to the end of your rope and keep pushing all because someone is there beside you.
You learn a little more about your limits with a few friends around, and you learn sometimes where to slow down and take a rest. That mental bit that holds back because it doesn’t want to give it’s all hides itself in the excitement when you look over at your friend as they gasp for air, take a desperate breath yourself and say “One more!”