Confessions Of a Moonlighter: What Lies Beneath A Sportswriter's Surface

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Confessions Of a Moonlighter: What Lies Beneath A Sportswriter's Surface

Work as a moonlighting "sportswriter" here at Bleacher Report has been good to me. I have enjoyed just about every minute of it.

New doors have been opened and it has given me an outlet to challenge my creative side by writing about something that I love, something that is so far removed from my everyday existence.

Sure there are the occasional hecklers and trolls who will try to bring me down, but believe me when I say there ain’t nothing you can do or say that will ever bring me down.

I’ve seen the very worst of it in my “other” profession, words on a computer screen don’t even come close to touching that level of indecency.

I put my heart into my writing, but my soul belongs to emergency medicine. Rarely do these intertwine. As a rule, I can shift effortlessly between the two.

This week was the exception to that rule.

While my heart begged to write something clever and eloquent, my soul required some unexpected one-on-one time. I was reminded of just how fragile the human spirit truly is.

Resilience is a virtue. A gift tied up with a brightly colored bow that I unwrap every day.

I compare life to shelves and shelves of glass jars. Big, small, decorative and plain. Some are incredibly ornate, those are the ones that hold the good things like happiness, dreams and hopes. They are the ones that we display proudly and try to keep dust free every day.

Some are dark and dreary, they are the ones that we push to the back hoping to infinitely store them away, happy to never see them again. They are filled with concoctions of fear and sickness and life’s unspoken unpleasantries.

They are tiny vials of potent poison, all it takes is a single drop from one of them and the rest of the jars come crashing down into a million tiny little pieces.

Life. It is what it is, filled with delicious highs and bitter lows. The joyous delights and the ugliness that lies beneath. It is a sickeningly sweet oxymoron.

We are subjected to all that’s ugly to remind us of what the true meaning of compassion is all about.

I am subjected to these things at work. Terrible things, horrible things. At times it's like starring directly into the sun. You want to bask in the glory of it despite knowing that it could damage you in the process.

I knew what I was getting into when I accepted the position.

Life.

Caring.

Nurturing.

Helping.

Healing.

Joy.

Sorrow.

Pain.

Death.

Disease.

Trauma.

It is exactly what I signed up for and I would not have it any other way.

Every morning I come home and slough off the exterior hardships from the night before. I’m bright and shiny and from the outside look as good as new. It’s the interior that never fully comes clean.

Weeks go by where there is nothing but goodness. I leave the hospital proud that I’ve made some kind of difference and tuck it neatly away in one of those beautiful jars.

But on occasion, drops from that ugly little vial filled with vulgarity and cruelty get mixed up in the potion of good, leaving me tattered and torn.

Everything falters from it, for I am not the kind of person who has become jaded and hardened just so I can tolerate life’s imperfections.

I am affected by it. No matter how gut wrenching it may be, I want to always feel it. It grounds me and serves as a reminder as to why I do what I do.

At work it brings out the best in me but in life the very worst. At times it renders me powerless. I have to step back remember to breath and decompress from it all.

I never welcome a “Bye-Week” when it comes to NASCAR, but for me it could not have come at a better time. As this week comes to a close I look forward to starting anew in the morning. All of the wounds will have healed as time has thankfully allowed.

I will be bright and shiny and from the outside look as good as new.

 

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