The Very Last Second

February 6th, 2014

You have one minute. Sixty seconds.

That’s it.

You’re down by one point. 25 to 26. If you convert this, you win.

Head down, follow through.

You know that within sixty seconds, you’ll have to kick it, no matter whether or not you’re ready. There’s nothing that will happen in the next sixty seconds that will make you more ready. You’ve kicked plenty of these. What are you waiting on?

Fifty seconds.

Waiting to the end of the minute is pointless, you tell yourself. You’re going to have to kick the ball before it’s over. Why not just kick it now? What are you waiting for?

Head down, follow through.

You’ve waited like this before. You know that it’s inevitable. Before your time is up you’ll either do it or you’ll never get that chance again. There is nothing to wait for, because it’s something that needs to happen.

Your breathing slows, but your heart races. Conversion kicks require an entire shift in mental focus. One moment, you’re beating and pummeling and tackling. Now you stop. Everything stops. And the only thing that matters is kicking that ball between the posts.

Thirty-five seconds.

Of everything you could think of, your mind wanders to one thing.

You think of your dad.

Twenty-five seconds.

His time ticks faster than the game clock. You glance up again.

Twenty seconds.

You’re as ready for him to go as you are ready to kick the ball between the posts.

Head down, follow through.

Fifteen seconds.

It’s inevitable. It’s coming to you, whether or not you’re ready for it. Delaying it won’t help you. It won’t make you more ready. You can think of different words to say or you can try to let your muscles prepare for a second longer, but will that really help you?

Think of all the things that you put off.

Ten seconds.

Head down, follow through.

Think of all the things that you should have said in the time that you had. That was your time. And the only person that let it go by was you.

Five seconds.

No escaping the inevitable.

You step forward. Your heart jumps and begins to rush. You leap into action. You swing your leg forward and pummel the ball into the air toward the posts. Head down, follow through.

You won’t wait until the very last second ever again.


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