Tuesday, August 21, 2012

"The Specialist"

I was totally addicted to the Olympics this year, watching as much as I could. Aside from all of the feel-good stories, one particular moment truly resonated with me. Mckayla Maroney was the clutch vaulter for Team USA gymnastics. Her sole job was to come to the Olympics and perform 5 vaults. She nailed one of the most important, helping seal the gold medal for her team. (Yes, her subsequent vaults "only" got her the silver, but girlfriend nailed that one vault).

Her vault was so good that it shocked even one of the judges:

She knew she had nailed it, and had a well-deserved celebration:

So how did I come to some potentially life-changing realization from watching this vault? It made me reflect a lot on MM's role as "the specialist". Her job was to be the best freaking vaulter she could, and she totally nailed it for her team. So what did a 30-something Mom, wife, Nurse Practitioner, wannabe triathlete take away from all this? It reminded me that I don't have to be perfect at EVERYTHING.

Does anyone else tell me I have to nail it all? No. I tell myself...and I put intense pressure on myself. I love Wonder Woman, but she didn't have kids, or a husband, or any bills to pay as far as I can tell. (Heck...if I had a lasso of truth and an invisible airplane I could get even more accomplished).

I'm not ashamed to ask for help, but I definitely load too much on my plate sometimes. I'm trying to cut it back a little, and focus on what is most important for my family and then my career and me personally. So if I don't volunteer for that school function, or I back off of something I wanted to help with, it isn't because I don't want to in my heart.

For me, the specialty is being a pretty freaking awesome nurse practitioner. This isn't me being cocky---I learned this at church this weekend thanks to Father Kathy. This is my gift, and one that I appreciate tremendously. There is always room for growth, but I believe I have the gifts of clinical judgement and compassion....and these make me good at my job. So is it ok to focus more energy here and not be awesome at everything else? I think so. Of course I will always strive to be a good mother, and always hold myself to a high standard in this area, but I don't have to do all of the other stuff.

So next time I start heaping more on my plate, please point me to this post...................


  1. love this, Kier. This is a post that I need to revisit often as well!!

  2. I loved reading this! Such a good message for all of us... and the MM analogy couldn't be better.

    On a separate note, I love hearing about your perspective as a nurse practitioner - I can't imagine doing what you do but you seem to tackle it with such grace. I bet your patients appreciate you more than you realize! :)

  3. Kier you are such a freaking rock star!! So glad I get to know you!! Great post!!