I see myself getting closer and closer to my final destination. Just a few more feet to run and I’ll be ready to kick the ball. As I’m approaching my destination, still hearing the screams and shouts from the side of me. A pain in my stomach appears. I was nervous. As I’m getting in position to kick the ball, my ankle twists the wrong way and I fall to the ground. There was a wide open shot to the goal, and I blew it. I cost the whole team our spot in the championship game. I knew everyone was disappointed in me as tears fell down my cold face with my ankle in excruciating pain.
I’ve been in many situations like this before, but none felt quite like this one because it was our last game as a team. We’ve been playing together since we were 10. Everyone was starting high school. It was like a new beginning for only some. Most of the girls on the team went to the same school. But I did not.
I kind of felt like the outcast on the team. I didn’t really fit in. But I wanted to. No one talked to me unless it was about soccer. I felt like I had no friends on the team. But, I realized being apart of that team didn’t mean I needed friends. It meant I needed to succeed in what I was doing. What I was there for. To play the sport I loved. This is what I wanted to be when I grew up. A professional soccer player.
Or did I only want to become professional because it was the only thing I was good at?
When I was young I had always dreamed of being a professional soccer player. I used to watch every game on TV every chance I got. But, since I was 3, I’ve danced because thats what every female in my family did. That was our “thing”. That’s what everyone wanted me to do. They didn’t want me to play sports, “Dancing is in your blood,” said my grandmother. When she passed away, I slowly gave up her dream of me becoming a dancer.
That’s not what I wanted to do in life. Personally, it was too much for me to handle at the time with school being in session. So, I finally convinced my mom into signing me up for soccer.
Extremely terrified, I did not want to go. But, my mom started to nag and says “You told me you wanted to play soccer, now you don’t even want to go to practice?” and a lot of other things that I blocked out while she still continued to talk. She was upset with me, I could tell by her tone of voice, and I didn’t want her to be, so I decided to just go, but I don’t think my mom completely understood how much fear I felt in my heart that day. Tears rushed into my eyes, but none down my face just thinking about going to practice. Since I was young, I was always shy and never really talked to anyone. I always stayed to myself, but soon, that was all about to change.
I started out like any regular 10 year old girl. Shy and nervous for what was soon approaching. The day finally came for my first practice with girls I had never met before in my life. Everyone but me already knew each other because they attend the same school. They all had known each other since they were in Kindergarden.
But, it turned out that the first day of practice with a group of girls I had never met before wasn’t as terrible and horrific as I first imagined it would be.
They were all nice and welcoming. I was the only new player, so it was awkward for me. I thought there would be other girls like me joining the team for the first time. But, I shouldn’t have had such a negative mind about the team. I let my nerves get the best of me. Since then, I’ve learned to be more outgoing and not always stay to myself. Turns out one of my best friends today is on that team that I didn’t want to be apart of in the beginning. I got something good out of being apart of ChestnutHill Blue Lightning Soccer Club. Being able to persevere. To finally show the “real me”.