Thirty Pieces

Disclaimer: This post is blasphemous.


There’s this popular icebreaker question…


“If you can invite anyone to dinner dead or alive who would you invite?”


You’ve heard it?


Anyway… whenever I’m asked this question my answer has been the same for as long as I can remember.


Every time


I always choose


the same person.




Judas Iscariot.


Betrayer of Jesus the Nazarene


I get mainly two different responses to my answer. 


The first: Interesting. 


This response is uttered by the person who refuses to pass judgement on my answer. 


The Second: Why!? He BETRAYED JESUS! For THIRTY pieces of silver! 


This response is shouted (and by shouted I mean typed in all caps) by offended Christians. 


But let me tell you where I’m at with this… 


I believe anyone who has read this story in the bible and afterward found themselves irreconcilably angry with Judas quite possibly missed the forest for the trees.


Stick with me here…


Is it possible? 


That maybe....


Just maybe 


Judas served as a reminder or warning that people WILL hurt you, WILL betray you, WILL set you up for failure. And that even when they screw you over, 


for thirty pieces of silver, 


or a higher fee, 


or a better commission, 


your destiny WILL still be fulfilled?


And that sometimes that person and their behavior might just be ABSOLUTELY critical to the fulfillment of that destiny?


The majority of the Christian world is angry at Judas, but Jesus himself said that it was going to happen and that it needed to happen.


Isn’t the death of Jesus one of THE pillars of the Christian faith? 


So ponder this...if there was no betrayal, 


then there’s no delivery to the Sanhedrin… 


No death sentence from Pontius Pilate  


and no crucifixion, 


no resurrection, 


no ascension, 


no savior for the world


no salvation for you.




On the train here in Italy, traveling from Brescia to Lake Garda yesterday my friend said to me…”Tianna” in his thick Italian accent so that my name sounds like: Tee-ahhnnnn-nah  when it rolls off his tongue...


“Tianna, we met in 2014 in Sopot I interviewed you in the mixed zone remember?”


Of course I remember, I was shocked as hell about winning another Bronze at the IAAF World Indoor championships and all he wanted to talk about was the bobsled team.


“But…I wouldn’t think that I would get to show you my university or Brescia. And I was thinking this would have never happened if you hadn’t left your husband.”


That’s true.


But drawing a direct line of causation from May 1st 2017 to July 24th 2018 seemed like a gross oversimplification of a complex chain of events.


I grew pensive (A default setting of mine).


I have spent most of the last (couple) year(s) being mad and disappointed. But it was now dawning on me that all parties involved were (albeit unwittingly) playing the role that I needed them to play. Because had that not gone so horribly and I had had the Fall Training Base I needed to have in order to have the year I wanted to have, my body would have most likely given up on me.


My body needed time and I wasn’t willing to give it.


And I fought hard but failed to recover from my lackluster training and terrible indoor performances. 


However, my attempts to recover forced me to rebuild my squad and now I’m surrounded by people I love and trust. People I am excited to see my career through and stand on the podium with.


Those sub par performances I’d been producing forced me to stop being so attached to the outcomes and to find satisfaction in the work, and in the journey. To appreciate improvements and progress in any way no matter how incremental.


Long story short…these people...


Their behavior...


Or their incompetence...


The agony...


The heartbreak...


The stress...


The betrayal...


Ushered me into this current manifestation of my true self.


And I’ve never felt more fulfilled or more alive.


That’s not to say there are no consequences for their actions.


Or that I won’t feel some kind of way about my own suffering at the hands of them.


But taking the long view...


None of the amazing things I have experienced would have happened.


Had it not been for the Judas’ in my life.


So perhaps consider that




Just maybe...


thirty pieces of silver


Isn’t so large a sum


To guarantee 


you start


Living the life you were meant to live.



Thy will be done.