I’ve been thinking about high school a lot these last few weeks. As I gear up for my last university semester, and start getting ready to graduate, I’ve been thinking about grade 12 constantly.Grade 12 was a crazy year for me, socially, academically, physically.

When I felt like my social world was coming down around me, and when I was making some pretty terrible decisions about my health, basketball saved me. The girls on my team and my coach didn’t accept any bullshit from me, and I am still incredibly grateful for that. Basketball was something that was mine. None of my friends had much interest in it, none of them played. At basketball, I could and had to leave every other part of my life at the door.

I was never the best player, and I’m the first to admit that. But I was strong, and I was bigger than a lot of high school girls. I played strong defence, because I could get the hell in the way of anybody. I wasn’t a high scorer, and I wasn’t especially fast. At the beginning of my last season, my coach had to tell me that there were going to be two players, the eleventh and twelfth best on the team, who wouldn’t get to dress for games. She was blunt and told me that, two weeks before the start of the regular season, I was in the 11 spot. I was so upset, but then she kept talking, and explained that she knew I wasn’t playing or practicing up to my potential. She basically told me that this was when she was going to stop accepting anything less than my best, all the time. She told me that the team wasn’t going to, either.

She kicked my ass in every practice the rest of the year. When I thought I’d reached my limits, she showed me that I didn’t have a clue where my limits were, and pushed me to them. She made me run as hard and as fast as the other girls, made me do sprints and pushups and situps when I wasn’t listening or doing what I was supposed to.

My coach and my teammates believed in me harder than I knew anyone could, and by the time the season started, I wasn’t in the 11 spot anymore. I spent the season dressing for every game, starting occasionally, and playing my ass off.

I need to find a way to believe in myself the way they believed in me.


One Response to “Past”

  1. I feel that way a lot too…that I need to believe in myself or feel better about myself. It’s an ongoing battle…hang in there!

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