By Paul Twardock
During a marathon, a wilderness adventure race, a school semester, or a rocky point in life there comes a point of desperation. Imagine skiing though woods covered in frost hour after hour. The sun rises, then it sets. The moon shines, then dims. Northern Lights come and go. Owls hoot in the distance. At first it’s exhilarating, then it’s boring, then the legs hurt, the mind rebels, the stomach wants fuel. The finish is unimaginable, too far away to see, as is the start. This is the zone of the slog: one step at a time. Decide to persevere and the finish will be yours.
My favorite part about this piece is how it applies something like skiing to quite literally everything. There is not a single activity or struggle that the word slog cannot be applied to, and what’s great about the piece is that it lets you know this without even having to tell you. I think it resonates especially with college students like me. The Slog is such an integral part of this scary and confusing chapter of our lives. Despite this, the piece has the subtle indication of hope. That this “Slog” is a temporary roadblock that passes with time.
Wow is this piece timely. In the current climate of the world the end seems impossibly far away, and so does the beginning. The whole world seems to be tipped on its head right now, and getting through to the end seems almost impossible. But reading this reminds me of all the other things I’ve done, completed, just gotten through, that seemed impossible. When you’re in the middle of something, your perspective is restricted. It’s like driving through fog, you can only see ten feet in front of you. But there was a beginning, and there will be an end. This was just the reminder I needed, that the only thing I have to do to make, is not give up. Thank you.
I really like this short story, it reminded me of times in my life I felt this way. Nothing is permanent, even though in the moment it feels that way. I have hit the point of desperation a few times in my life, thinking my life wasn’t going to get better or not seeing the way out. Each time, to my surprise a path became clear and there was transformation that occurred. Everytime I have felt this way, I could not see the purpose until I was on the other side. Thank you.