Winning Isn’t Everything

Sarah - Hinsdale, Illinois
Entered on February 12, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
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Winning Isn’t Everything

I have a passionate love of winning. The feeling that I get when I have shown dominance over someone else is one of the best, and the glory and pride that come along with victory cannot be replaced. My love of triumph is a feeling that is impossible to ignore. Grades, sports, arguments, and even board games; I am always determined to win.

My sister, Jen, and I are three and a half years apart. As long as I can remember, I have been better than her at everything. I was always taller, smarter, faster, and stronger than her because I was older. I cannot deny that when I was younger, I exploited this fact in everything that we did together. I turned every activity into a race or competition. I pointed out all of the things that I was better at. I would race her to places and I would always win. I was farther than her in school, so I was always right. Sometimes, I even tallied points against her. My dad had to create two divisions in our family, divided by age, so that my sister could feel that she had won something. When I look back on this, I realize how terrible she must have felt to never be the best child in the family, and I wish I would have let her win at least a few times.

Today, I am eighteen and she is fourteen. Jen is now an extremely fast swimmer. Every swim meet I go to I have to worry about not letting her beat me in every single event. At first, I was embarrassed at letting my younger sister win. When I expressed my concerns with her victories to my coach, he would wonder why I was upset. He explained to me that I should be proud because I had a lot of influence over her, and have helped her become so fast. I pushed her to be the best when we were growing up, and demonstrated how hard work pays off.

Even though Jen is now as fast as me, she doesn’t boast about it. She likes the competition, but she doesn’t make fun of me after winning. The way my sister handles this has taught me something very important about life. Winning isn’t everything, and it is important to lose sometimes. Jen grew up with someone who was always better than her. Now as she starts to win things, she knows how to win without making people feel bad about it. Even though it is hard to admit, I am proud to lose to my sister. She has shown me that I should not stress about winning everything. Jen has taught me what I believe, that winning isn’t everything and sometimes it is okay to lose.