I recently have read my fair share of memoirs. Books about great leaders for a leadership class, books by funny men and women detailing their careers in entertainment, a soldier’s struggles at home and at war, and a feminist fighting for gender equality by leaning into the conversation. I was inspired about the lessons those great men and women wrote about. I drank in their knowledge. Now this is the point where I went, “I totally should write some memoir style reflections in a series on my blog. They can be bold, they can be funny, they can be life affirming!”
I clearly think very highly of myself sometimes. Either that or I have some lofty ambitions. I naturally doubted who would care and why I would even bother writing things only to have them get lost in the endless abyss of the internet. So at first I let the idea go.
So You, the reader, must be asking yourself, “Kyle, I’m currently reading a memoir style reflection on your blog, its lofty, ambitious, and kind of boring. Get to the point.”
“Okay, okay already reader! I’ll get to my point.” I will reply with some mild defiance. Maybe without the defiance. At any rate, here is my point: I feel like I have learned a lot recently. From the doldrums of High School, to the transformational experiences of college, to diving into the ocean of adulthood without a life jacket, and some missteps in love and dating. My blog has always been the place where I share the updates about my personal and professional life. So I figured, this could be the place where I share some of these lessons that I have learned.
One of my best friends since birth once made a comment in high school about all of the awkward encounters and stories she had. She remarked that her life is an experience sometimes. We used to joke that if we had reality shows they would be our names with experience at the end, i.e. “The Kyle Bianchini Experience.” That is the inspiration for my title.
For my first post, I decided to share a brief story that recently happened, that I think has a nice small sized lesson in it.
I recently sat down with my supervisor and we had a conversation about the things that I used to do that made me the happiest. We were discussing about how my transition to Baltimore was particularly difficult at certain points. She had suggested that I look to the things that I used to like doing for inspiration. Perhaps this could lead me to feel more connected to this community. I immediately brought up that I used to get a ton of personal fulfillment out of being a youth diving coach.
My coaching journey came to an end the summer of 2013 when I decided that I needed to take on a summer internship in orientation rather than coach. The decision was a highly logical one and it paid off in spades. I now have so many friends and colleagues at the wonderful Stockton University. It was such an amazing opportunity to grow in a field I love. I made tons of memories and wouldn’t trade that internship experience for the world. I learned a lot.
Part of me still wishes I didn’t give up my head coaching job at Sunnybrook Swim Club. I truly adored coaching there. Moorestown is an amazing community. The parents were so supportive. Along with my assistant coach, I built a little powerhouse team of divers. Honestly, its one of my most impressive athletic achievements.
Here I sit, a short time later, with two interview offers for coaching positions in the Maryland area. So what’s the tiny lesson I mentioned? Sometimes we have to give up some things we love to do the things that are necessary. That is okay. That does not mean that we need to permanently give them up. In life we need to do the things that make us happy. Diving was such a huge part of my life both as a competitor and as a coach. Sometimes we need to take our greatest hits and watch them evolve. But at the end of the day, do what makes you happy.