Reading time: 5 minutes
I am probably the biggest fan of the Amazing Race; it’s one show I NEVER miss. It doesn’t matter which continent I may find myself, trust me to either stream the episode online or hunt down the channel that shows it. Last night, I was seated on the couch, waiting for the final episode of the Amazing Race Australia. My heart threatened to fall out out of my chest, because it beat so fast, you’d have sworn a relative of mine was on the show. I was excited and couldn’t wait to see which team made it to the finish line first. Of course I had my favorites but at that point, three out of eleven teams remained and it all boiled down to a formidable partnership.
My favorite team so far! Yay! for girl power! [photo culled from http://www.news.com.au]
For clarification purposes, the amazing race is literally a race around the world. As an entrant, you are expected to choose a teammate. During the course of the race, you will be subjected to tasks that put you under pressure, tasks that test your skills both individually and as a team, and tasks that test your relationship. Of course, completing each task requires excellent communication, acknowledgement ad appreciation. Husbands get frustrated with wives that can’t keep up, and wives get mad at husbands who can’t read maps (you know, because men are just bad at reading maps). But here’s an epiphany I had: You cannot complete the race if you have a partner that gives up!
I realized after watching the finale for Amazing Race Australia season 1yesterday, that marriage, courtship, relationships…whatever stage you may be is just like the amazing race. You are a participant in the show and you have to choose a partner. Of course, many people choose their spouse; it only makes logical sense to do so. However, when the pressure builds, they start to crack, and you really start to hear what they think of their spouses. They get angry, they yell and they fight! And all of that is normal…except giving up should never be a choice!
Dave and Rachel won eight legs of the race, and eventually won the final leg
to become season winners [photo culled from cbs.com]
This show made me ponder…how many people in relationships have a partner for life? Like really, do you have a partner who’s there to stick with you through thick and thin? Like the amazing race, relationships have their moments. There are times when you win because the tasks or problems at hand can be easily resolved by both of you. But what happens when you fail your partner because the task was just not to your strengths or skills? How does it all end? Does your partner bail on you, or does he encourage you to try harder, without being the least bit condescending? Relationships are sometimes tough, and they can be emotional roller coasters every now and then. It is important to choose a partner who will stand by you. A loyal partner will always be there for you, uplifting you, talking you through fear when you have to walk on a tight rope, and holding your hand through a difficult task.
Many of us do not have life partners; we have partners that are simply good for the moment we’re in; partners who threaten to break up after every petty quarrel, partners who get scared because things are moving too fast because really they never planned for things to get that far, partners who are constantly on the lookout for a better person- they expect you to play your role while they have other people auditioning for it, partners who are simply with us for what we have to offer, and once we hit a little bump in life, they wave goodbye and move on to someone else. These are the partners many of us have settled for, hoping that they won’t bail, when really we know in the depths of our hearts that they can barely wait!
It’s time to be honest with yourself! Before you choose a partner, think about it like you are going to the amazing race, except you’ll be running this race forever. You will face difficulties along the way, you’ll have successes to celebrate too. You will face tasks you can’t figure out quickly enough, you will get irritated with each other, you may even scream and fight because the other person just doesn’t see everything the way you do, but the important thing is even at the peak of your anger and frustration, your partner genuinely cares and is willing to work with you till the very end.
Uchenna and Joyce won season 7 of the race. Joyce cut her hair becauseshe was told it will bring her and her husband good luck! [photo culled from amazingrace.wikia.com]
Understand very clearly that the essence of the race is not to win your partner, but rather to win with your partner, so you need to ask yourself if your choice of a partner is someone who wants to work with you, or win against you. If during the course of this amazing race called a relationship, all your partner wants to do is outshine you for the sake of the cameras, then you do not have a partner for life. A partner who intends to be with you for life will uplift you and celebrate you when you’ve done a great job! That same partner will encourage you when you’re struggling and will understand when you fail, that you are not perfect.
Do not settle for a partner who is standing by the door, waiting to bail on you. The best teams I’ve seen on the amazing race are the teams who understood the importance of working together against all odds, apologizing after they did wrong and did not let the thought of giving up on each other cross their minds! So again, I ask you, do you have a partner for life? XOXO.
P.S: I wonder when the amazing race is coming to South Africa. I so want to take part, although I’m left with the tricky issue of who to go with #SingleGirlProblems! *sigh! I may just move to Australia or the US!