What does it mean to be a division one athlete? Think long and hard about it, really I mean. If you ever had any exposure to the world of college sports, asides from watching it, then you know there is not a clear answer to the question. Let me give you my opinion: IT’S AWESOME!
It is nice for people to look up to you can say, “Man, that’s a cool dude,” or other compliments. To be honest, kids are the best because they are the most honest people you will ever encounter and I never had a kid say a negative thing towards me. But with that said, there are people who do doubt your abilities at times.
I heard it all, “You’re too skinny,” “You’re not big enough,” “Why are you even doing what you doing?” “You need to stop because you’re not good enough.” I heard it all since high school that I will never be a great athlete. It has not rattled me or messed up my confidence. You could say I was determined to prove people wrong about my athletic ability.
To me, I am pretty athletic. I can jump high, I have good speed, and I can learn things fast in sports. When things are going well for you there will be things to slow you down, in my case injuries. Injuries have not been a problem for me until I reached high school. I suffered a broken finger, pulled hamstrings, strained hip flexor, stress fracture in back and shin, fractured tibial plateau, partial torn ACL, and complete ACL and MCL tears.
Most of these injuries are on the left side of my body. Being injured sucks, but rehab for injuries are even worst. You have to go through pain to get better. In other words you have to be dedicated to get better. You have to put yourself in a mindset than this injury WILL NOT hold you back. I had to go through this process again the beginning of this year when I pulled my hamstring in my left leg for a third time.
This injury kept me out for most of the indoor season. I never had a hamstring pull this severe before. Some of my teammates had this injury this season and came back within two weeks. I on the other had come back in two months (let that sink in for a second). Me attempting to “tough it up” made the injury worst at times during the two months of recovery. I had to learn to be disciplined and trust in the process that I will eventually get better. That what exactly happened.
This past weekend was the 2016 SOCON Indoor Championships in Birmingham, AL. I was not supposed to compete. I was not supposed to score in my event. I was not even supposed to place in the top 3. Well I did just that in the heptathlon. I somehow scored a personal best in the event and got on the podium for the first time in college.
This post is for encouragement, not to show off or talk about my raise to glory. This is to show how I am a human being and I have to go through things I necessarily did not want to do. Luke said in the Bible that nothing is impossible without God (1:37 ESV). This post is just a reflection. I deserve none of the accolades or credit I earn from this past weekend or in life. Jesus does because he saved me and God because he created me and allowed me to gain a relationship with him through Christ.
Have determination, have dedication, have discipline, you shall go far in any avenue in life.
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Images courtesy of SOCON Photos.