News Feed & Journal
12/21/2023 4:58 PM
In March of 2020, our world came to a screeching halt. I was in the 7th grade and attending a middle school near my home. I had no idea that this shutdown would last so long and that I would be doing my school work on a laptop at home. It was difficult for everyone. My primary comfort was my family and my neighborhood friends. We gathered outside frequently to talk and hang out. One of our neighborhood friends grabbed a soccer ball and we divided up to play. I loved it! Although I was first introduced to soccer playing on a preschool recreational team, It did not go well then. But this, well, it was different. I was good. It felt natural. At school, I had a few friends who had played and were on the team, but I was in dance. I liked dance ok, but it had run its course for sure and I was ready for something different. But here we were, I had found something I loved when the world shut down. Days turned into weeks, weeks into months, and, finally, there was a glimmer of hope that things may get back to some normalcy in the fall. My neighborhood friends and I spent our days wearing ruts in the grass playing soccer and other games at my house, but we all kept hoping that we could get back to school and some sort of regular life again.
School did begin again in the fall for my last year of middle school; however, at the last moment, they backed out of in person school and chose to do online school until things improved in our area. The good news was that I was still able to hang out with my neighborhood friends (although we are different ages, we are still close to this day because of this time together). After a little over a month, students were given the option to attend school under certain precautionary measures. Not long after school began in person, I found out about soccer tryouts. I asked my parents about it and they agreed I should try out even though they were concerned that I might feel dejected if I didn’t make the team. After all, my competition and practice was only with my friends in the neighborhood.
Tryouts came later in the fall and I gave it my best effort. To my surprise, and my parents too, I made the team! I was thrilled. My friends on the team were all impressed with how far I had come in such a short amount of time. Games didn’t begin until the spring and I still had a lot to learn. Sometimes, the coach and my teammates were frustrated by my lack of knowledge, but I listened and learned as much as I could. When spring came and games began, I didn’t start, but I did play every game. By the end of the season, I was starting on the left side of the defense! And this is how my soccer journey began.
Now, I am about to enter my fourth season, junior year of high school, of school play after three years of compressed learning and development. I still have a long way to go, but I am loving every moment of it!
Posted by: Addison Boland