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Thoughts About My Life Experience: Never Give Up

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    As I was standing in the center of the Brother Martin gymnasium, preparing for a tumbling pass that I could routinely do in my sleep, I felt the piercing eyes of the students and faculty watching my every move. The time had soon arrived for me to take off, and with my heart rapidly palpitating through my chest, I began the pass. All was going well until I felt an unusual pop in my right calf as I was upside down in midair. My head crashed to the mat before my feet located the ground, and confusion consumed my thoughts because I was unaware of what I had done wrong.

    I tried to get up and walk, but I immediately fell to the floor because my right leg could no longer support the weight of my body. I laid on on my back and screamed in agonizing pain, and before I knew it, I was being carried swiftly to the back of my mom’s burgundy Mercedes. My mom absentmindedly sped to the hospital, whipping around every corner because her motherly instincts were in overdrive.

    Once I arrived to the hospital, doctors discerned that I had completely ruptured my right achilles tendon. A few moments later, nurses were swarming into my tiny room to prep me for surgery. Fear swept over me as a nurse in light blue scrubs inched towards my forearm with a long, sharp intravenous needle. Then, an anesthesiologist, standing beside the bed, told me to count down backwards from ten. ‘Ten, nine,’ I said, and the next thing I knew, I was in the recovery room feeling lightheaded and exhausted.

    After I woke up, feelings of disappointment and anger rushed through my mind because I knew the chance of competing at nationals was no longer a possibility. Nothing stung worse than watching everything that I had been working for all year just dissipate into thin air. In addition, I felt as though I had let my team down because they were depending on me to do my part of our intricate routine that took months to prepare.

    Showing up to practice the next week was very difficult because I had to watch the routine as one of my teammates filled the gap that I had left vacant. I tried as hard as I could to hold my tears back, but sadness crept over me making it hard to control. The water from my eyes streamed down my face like a flowing river and at that moment, I realized that I had taken my abilities for granted.

    A month later my team and I flew to nationals in Orlando, Florida, where they executed the performance of their lives. As I was watching from the sideline, I could not have been more proud to be a part of such an amazing team. They taught me to never give up, and six months after my injury, I returned to the mat and tried to regain all of my skills. Today, I am better than I was before the accident. Through this devastating experience, I learned to never give up on my ambitions because I could potentially miss out on something special. 

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