The past couple of weeks my Facebook has been inundated with pictures from the class of 2012’s graduation pictures, and I couldn’t help but think that it seems like yesterday that I was among the seven hundred-something students walking across the stage at Viejas Arena. It seems like only hours ago that I was boarding the plane for the first time, bound for New York City for NYU Freshman Orientation. And it seems as if this whole year passed by in a single New York Minute, but I guess in a way it has. Each and every single memory has been compressed into a tiny piece of information, stored away in my brain, only to be brought to surface again by a picture, a sound, or smell. It’s crazy to think how much I have experienced in a year, but I think it’s even crazier to think that I cannot even measure how great of a year it was, not by the number of wins or losses, nor smiles and tears that marked my face. I guess its not about the journey, rather about the people you meet along the way.
Love my club girls
Looking back, this year’s been great. Graduation, a trip to Europe, getting cleared to play, the beginning of college, an ECAC Championship, and so much more has happened in a little less than 365 days. But when I take away everything that happened, I find myself thinking about everyone who made it happen. As a military brat, I learned early on that the best way to survive the long deployments and constant moving was to have a strong support system, anchored by your family and friends who were going through the same thing. I employed the same tactics throughout the rest of my life in every challenge I encountered, because it simply worked. Being the social butterfly that I am, making new friends was never a problem, especially being on a team. For anybody that has been part of any team or unit, I think you understand when I say that the people you spend that much time become your family. You can do silly things in front of them, tell them your deepest and darkest secrets, and even conquer the world with them because they are with you through the thickest and thinnest of times. As for me, my teammates are my sisters, best friends, and some of the coolest people I’ve ever met. They’ve influenced me in more ways than I’d like to share and know more about me than I probably know about myself. So in honor of all of those teammates, I would like to dedicate this blog to them and share a few stories about them.
Part of our Freshman Class
During high school, I played for the San Diego Surf Soccer Club. Club soccer is interesting in the way that each person on your team is not only competing for a spot on the field but also on a college roster, it’s every man for themselves and can get a little cutthroat. Although I wasn’t on any given team for more than a year because I was a goalkeeper playing up (age-wise) I made a number of friends that I still keep in touch with to this day. I figure when you tear your ACL and your teammates are there, it’s sort of hard to get rid of the ones who held your hand when you were writhing in pain. These girls not only helped me during my whole ACL recovery (which is an entirely different story in itself) but were my bestest of friends in high school. We may not remember the wins and losses now, but we do remember the times we fell down laughing at each other in practice and super long road trips to exotic locations like Lancaster and Las Vegas (please note the sarcasm).
When I moved to New York the first people I met were my teammates. Rewind back to August…we’re all sitting in the Coles Conference Room for the first time as a team. I looked around the room and saw not only my teammates for the next season, but best friends, future bridesmaids and sisters for life. In the matter of only a few weeks, we had formed friendships that would normally take years to build.A few ice breakers and fitness tests later, we were more than just teammates. We bonded over doing extra running and the sun pounding down on our backs during two-a-days. Although we spent our first few days in New York dealing with extreme heat, an earthquake, and a hurricane, I wasn’t clicking my cleats together wishing I was back home. I was home, with 23 new best friends by my side.
I think it’d be fair to say that we’ve had a decent amount of adventures this past year. Ranging from our numerous travel issues to the All-Athlete Auction to even sitting in the training room catching up on everything that had happened since we had last seen each other. We’ve hung out in waiting rooms, patiently waiting for teammates to emerge from their surgeries, we’ve held each other in warm embraces when tears fall down our faces, and we’ve seen each other at our best and worst. We’ve done it all together.
Through Rain, Sleet, and Snow
Coming home this Summer I felt I experienced more changes than I ever have in any of my global moves. I wasn’t used to having a room to myself all the time or working out alone. A part of me was missing when I came home. It just goes to show that the people whom you surround yourself with are truly monumental in every little thing you do. I truly think the team does not get enough credit in a success of any given athlete. Sure, the parents drive the kids to practice, and the coach teaches them how to play but it’s the other girls on the field who push, inspire and persevere together.
One Team. One Dream.
Quote of the Week: “Scars heal, glory fades, and all we are left with are the memories made.” – Chris Cagle
Jam of the Day: “My Life Be Like (Ooh-Ahh)” by Grits feat. Toby Mac