When I was in elementary school, I started joining clubs and teams as early as I could. I was no longer that kid who sat in the corner, but the kid who just wanted to try things. One of the first things I was allowed to join was the Cross Country Team. I was in 3rd grade and just wanted to be a part of something. Me and a good friend who was a really strong runner, ran together, and at times, she would even find the energy to pull me alongside. I was short, she was tall, and we wanted to run side-by-side. She even lent me her old windbreaker. At the meet, she and I both qualified to go to the regionals, the only ones in our grade, and we loved it.
Eventually, I became the fastest cross country runner in our school. I even got a C in Home Economics because I kept missing classes to go to the meets. (If my teacher could see me now!)
Track and Field had my heart too. I started out in mixed relay and eventually sped up to become the anchor in girls relays as I got older. By the time I was in 8th grade, I ran the relay plus the 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, and 1500m. I couldn’t get enough. My coach didn’t want me to do all the events, but I wanted to and I did, with my sub not too far behind.
By the time I reached high school, a small fish in a big pond, I tried out for nothing athletic, and totally regret letting fear get the best of me. I was a typical teenager who believed there was always someone bigger and better than me, so why try? I focused on my academics, but still loved Phys Ed, and took it all throughout high school. I politely declined when a few of my gym teachers asked me to try out for Track or Cross Country over the years. I was also focused on this boy, who I now call my husband, and well, despite being risk-averse in high school, he was the best decision ever.