Track 👟season 2020 was the one thing that seemed to hold some hope at the beginning of the pandemic. It’s an outdoor sport with lots of individual events. 🙅🏻♀️Who knew that wouldn’t be safe? Angelina started off that season on concussion protocols from a 🏐volleyball injury. The very week that she was cleared, the world started to shift. The girl who was excited about track 👟season was now looking forward with concerns. As rumors swirled about an extended Spring Break from school, track practices continued- until one fateful day when all athletes were directed to gather their bags and leave immediately. 🚫No one knew what that meant at the time. Coaches sent workouts for athletes to train at home to be ready for competition whenever we returned to school. We all know how that story ended.😔
There’s something about 👟track and field. It’s a sport that thrives on camaraderie. The athletes set individual goals and see their hard work 🥇results as they progress through the season. Track athletes push each other, 🎉cheer for one another, support every other athlete. When one person does well, the whole team wins. 🏆There’s sweat and raw emotion during track meets. There are also smiles and a whole lot of respect between the athletes.
When the 2021 season rolled around, Angelina was pumped. This was a chance to close that gap from last year when the season had to shut down before it even started. She 😍loves the coaches, her teammates, the competition. The morning of the first meet, she got up early to grab a ☕️coffee on the way to school- an iced Blondie from 7Brew (try it- you’ll like it!). The day was moving as expected leading up to that meet. Finally, it was time for her first event- the triple-jump. As a 🏐volleyball player, this girl knows how to jump. She does it every day. But on this particular day- she landed wrong. She heard a cracking sound followed by shooting pains. 😳Struggling to get up, she limped to her coach to report an injury. Once again, track stopped before it could even start. 😢The trainer diagnosed a sprain and put her in a boot for a few days. Time on the couch with that foot elevated and iced is how she’ll spend the long weekend. Combine that with 💊meds for pain, and she should be good to get back out there soon.
You know what she wanted to do after the trainer put that boot on her foot? She asked if we could head back over to the 👟track meet to watch her friends compete. Back to the scene of the crime, so to speak. She was clearly in pain and feeling disappointed, but it was important to her to support the other athletes. 💕So, we did just that- after a quick stop through ChickFilA to grab some nuggets because that makes everything better, right? 😂As we drove back to the meet, she was already finding 🌹roses in the thorns. She was glad it wasn’t during Regionals 🏐volleyball. She was thankful that it was at the beginning of the season. She felt happy that the injury wasn’t worse. She even laughed that an athlete like her- who knows how to jump- landed wrong at the very first event! There’s a lesson here- straight from this teenage athlete. It’s about inner strength and faith. 💥It’s about accepting your fate and figuring out how you’re going to deal with it. 💥It’s about handling those blows with grace. 💥It’s about showing up for others even when you’re out of the meet.💥
Have you ever been given the boot? Those stinking times in life when things just don’t go as planned. 🙋🏻♀️The moments when the 🎢rollercoaster careens off the track, and you don’t even have time to react? Sure- we’ve all been there. Guess what? We’ll all be given the boot again. The question isn’t whether or not we’ll get the boot. The question is about how we will react to that boot.
It’s okay to be 😡mad. It’s perfectly fine to 😭cry, maybe toss out a few 🤬cuss words. It’s even okay to think things aren’t fair. Want to know what’s not okay? To live there. To let those feelings take root. To forget that you have the power to rise above the situation with a pinch of grit, a hint of moxie, and an attitude that won’t tolerate defeat. 🔥
So, go ahead- yell. Shed some 😭tears. Have a little pity party. Then, pull yourself back up, dust yourself off, and figure out a plan. Maybe your plan involves the help of others- ask for it. ✅Maybe you need to change things up a bit, like wearing a boot on your foot- follow the directions. ✅Maybe you need to forgive yourself- look in the mirror and say it out loud. ✅It’s called character- and it’s there when you 👀look for it. You’ve got this- whatever your ‘this’ is. What if…you wear that boot. We’ve all been there, and we’ll all be there again. Just figure out how to take that next step.💖