The Experience of ArcheryPosted Nov 14th, 2014
I wanted to share with you a story about my son and dedication.
He has been shooting for 6 years now and a few months ago he decided he was done. He put down his bow and changed his focus to the things all adults do; a job, a girlfriend, paying bills. It broke my heart, but he is a man now, and I wanted to support him in his decision. He sold the bow and all the thing necessary to shoot, to raise money to buy a car.
I do understand the pressures of today’s world and how pursuing a dream can often get in the way of grown up responsibilities. I too had to abandon my training a few years back. I was a single mom and my son, my home and food on the table mattered more.
But last week, I got a call, “Mom, I want to shoot again”. My son realized by removing something that brought him such joy and focus, he was not happy. We quickly put together a bow I had lying around (ok, being a professional level archer does has its perks). I had an old GMX riser and light limbs and I think I borrowed a friends Easton AAE arrows, and he began shooting again. I realized, watching him work to regain his form that this is why most of us shoot. Because we love it.
Not only do we love it, we enjoy the experience of trying. When it is you and your bow, who really cares how good you shoot? The point is to keep trying. Even at my level, I keep trying to get better. I keep trying to perfect my form. I keep trying to shoot perfect scores. But in the end, I love shooting. Shooting brings me to a place of calm. I feel in control and a sense of belonging. No matter what is going on in the world, when I shoot it is just me, a bow and a target.
I have had students and friends put down their bows only to wonder why they feel a disconnect. No matter how you shoot, it is a part of you. In this hectic world, having a something inside you that allows you to feel like you can be MORE, is priceless. Shooting connects you to something bigger than yourself. It brings a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction. It opens up a community of amazing people that share your passion and are willing to help you achieve your goals.
We all can’t be Olympic archers, but we all can feel the satisfaction of shooting a little better each time.
So the next time you put down your bow for whatever reason; time, money, frustration. Remember, you can always go back. And if you pick your bow up, just once a week, you will feel more in control, more connected, and eventually the things that made you put your bow down aren’t as big as you thought.
As for my son, he found time to shoot again and he found himself. He realized there is a little time to focus on himself and what truly makes him happy.