Let’s hear it for the enablers
Alas, that’s the way it goes and while some will let words fall it is here I will attempt to reclaim but one fallen word: enabler. After reading that word you immediately thought of drugs and alcohol didn’t you? Yes, it would appear enabler is reserved only for the gamblers, drug pushers, and other less than positive images. But this does an injustice to all the amazing positive enablers out there. The people who say “Hell yeah! Not only should you do it, but you should do it right now!”
This thought occurred to me when helping out at last week’s Bob Macintosh’s triathlon (congrats on year 11!). Like the countless other events I’m lucky enough to attend in our community, I always try to make a point to cheer on people I like to call the enablers. These are the people who reply to cheering by saying “but I’m not racing”. While that is true, it can also be stated that without them, nothing would be possible.
These are the parents who come out to watch their son’s or daughters. Or better yet, the grandparents who come out to watch the grandkids so mom and dad can get out and play. Then of course there is the girlfriend or boyfriend who has made sacrifices in order for their sweetie to commit the ridiculous amount of time it takes to get good at anything. Not to mention the local shops who keep you supplied with the gear you need. Then, if you’re truly lucky, there are the countless other well wishers that make it possible for you to do what you love.
Then if you’re going into events we have to acknowledge the absolutely staggering amount of volunteers it takes to put all this stuff on. Not only are there the countless ‘day-of’ volunteers, but there are also those who work for months in advance making sure everything clicks without a hitch. Frankly, most volunteers don’t get enough thanks and recognition for taking the time to be such positive forces in their community.
In the end I’d like to think an enabler is anyone who helps you tickle your fancy. Whether your pleasure be on the boat, on the green, on the trails, in the den, or wherever you find yourself in your most happy state. Whoever makes those moments possible are the people who should always be thanked, and dare I say, enabled.