There are probably some people who read the title of this post and thought it referred to the Michigan game, right? Heck, if Ohio State’s coach accidentally wandered over to “Fear the Hat,” he’d probably think the same thing, because as Wright Thompson so memorably captured in his piece for ESPN, Urban Meyer has a laser-like focus that has brought him great success…and at times, great unhappiness.
No, the win I’m talking about is Urban Meyer’s battle with Urban Meyer, his fight with that wicked inner animal of ambition that is always hungry and never satisfied no matter how much it’s fed.
And he needs this win, not just for his own health and well-being, but also for the hope it would provide college football fans who also know the struggle to find balance in life.
I’m sure it felt familiar to anyone who has acquaintances, associates and colleagues, but few actual friends.
It probably brought pangs to anyone who’s ever realized they’ve never checked anything off their bucket list of life’s ambitions, because their life has become an endless to-do list: one chore after another, after another, after another.
If you’ve ever woken up only to have your first thought be how many hours until I can go back to sleep? If you’ve ever spent your entire vacation doing the exact same things you would have done at work; if a family member has ever given you money to buy something you want only to realize you have no idea what you want, than Urban Meyer’s tale certainly resonates.
Meyer’s story echoes in every lonely heart. It rings true with everybody who’s ever sacrificed, not knowing what all the sacrifices were adding up to. It’s a reminder for everyone who suddenly, horribly recognized that they could no longer recall the last time they had fun.
Work can be an addiction, only it never brings the high of a fix, only the painful crash of withdrawal.
So good luck, Coach Meyer. No pep talk you ever give will provide half as much inspiration as if you can win at life now…after you almost lost yourself.