Just Breathe..

6 04 2011

Sports are definitely a huge part of my life, they take up all my time, and no matter how frustrating they get I would never be able to give that up.  I started playing volleyball when I was 12 and I fell in love with it.  I’m pretty short (about 5 foot) but I was a power server and I could jump really high to get my hits so I play front row, outside hitter. I continued playing volleyball all through middle school and into highschool, but soccer is my number one sport.  My family is from the Democratic Republic of Congo and my father more specifically, played soccer his whole life.  I was born in Johannesburg, South Africa and moved to Illinois when I was about 4 years old.  My dad taught my sisters and to play soccer but my sisters didn’t really like it.  Me being the middle child may be an explanation for always trying to get my parents attention, more specifically my Dad’s attention. I’m the go-to person in my family, anyone needs anything they go to me because they know it’ll get done and get done right. So when all my sisters quit soccer and refused to play with my dad because “they hated it”, I was the one who stuck around, and would sit around with him and watch all the matches on TV while my sisters rolled their eyes, and told me it was boring. I have 2 older sisters and a younger sister so it gets pretty hectic around here sometimes. I would always play pick up games with my dad, he coached an AYSO team that my sisters and I were on and I just really picked up on it.

It wasn’t until my 8th grade year going into highschool that I really started to get involved in soccer.  My freshman year I tried out and made the varsity team, and from then on I was hooked.  It was soccer day and night for me because I wanted to get better, I wanted to keep growing in the game.  I play left or right-wing on defense and I love it.  I have a tendency though to beat myself up over little things, whether it be in school, or sports one little mistake is enough to keep me up for the night, tossing and turning trying to figure out why I did that, and how I will never let myself make that mistake again, because for me being good isn’t enough.  I have to be better than good, and I have come to find out that I am my worst enemy.  I struggled this season not only as a sophomore and being one of the youngest on the team but also with finding some type of motivation.  I needed to figure out how to bring out the best in me during our games, and I couldn’t.  I would try, and try, but the result would always disappoint me, and I felt as if I let myself down.  I was upset, and angry all the time.  It got to the point that people would tell me to “shake it off, you did fine” and I would snap at them. I was mad at them because I felt like everyone was lying to me, I felt that everyone was just sugar-coating the truth and I wanted someone to tell me what I needed to do.  I couldn’t take playing like this, and it was effecting everyone on the team. 

I found it pretty ironic how I was going through this little funk, and Landon Donovan posted on twitter asking his followers what he should blog about next, something soccer related.  I was sitting in my french class bored out of my mind, like every other day because my whole family speaks french that class is extremely boring for me, (and my teacher is constantly speaking french wrong, but I don’t want to correct her. That would be rude. hahahaha)  So I’m sitting there on my phone, facebook, and twitter keeping me company, while I try to shake the nerves because I know that after this period I have a soccer game, and against a really good team, so it’s safe to say I was stressing just a bit.  I saw that tweet and I thought to myself,  “someone else has to understand how I feel right now. I can’t be the only one.” So I asked Landon Donovan to talk about who and what motivate him, and how he recoups mentally and emotionally after a tough loss.  I didn’t really expect him to respond to my tweet, just because I felt like it was so mundane, he probably got asked that question a million times already. So I kinda brushed it off, went off to my game and we ended up losing, and it was an intense game to say the least.  Everyone’s emotions were on high (not because we’re girls either) and when we lost it was just another thing that I had to deal with.  I went to bed, and replayed the game over and over in my mind, thinking if I just did this differently maybe we would have had a chance.  I got up in the morning, and I was in the worst mood, I just did not want to go to school or practice that day.  So I went on Twitter (i’m not addicted.) and I saw that Landon Donovan wrote his blog, and me being the curious person I am, read it and I was literally in tears.  (You guys totally have to check his blog out it’s legit landontimothy.wordpress.com)  #1. He responded to my question and #2. He just changed my whole perspective on EVERYTHING.  I can not explain how much a few simple words effected me (is it affect or effect, I can never get it right) I just love how everything comes back full circle. 

The main thing is having fun, and I took the fun out of the game I love by stressing out over every little detail. So, I have a game tomorrow, and that will be a battle as well.  But, I know what I have to do now. Relax. Have fun, and just breathe.

OH and Landon Donovan is my hero, honestly I get so much crap from everyone at school because I love the guys on the USMNT. (I keep telling people their legit but no one listens to me.) But oh well, He is honestly the most down to earth and inspirational person ever.  He’s really a great role model.

Alright there’s my babbling for the day.

-Naomi ❤




4 responses

8 07 2011

that was a really interesting read, thanks for that. I’m new here too, well, I’ve been here about a week now but I’d still count that as being new.

8 07 2011

Thanks. I wasn’t sure I made much sense I was kinda rambling along there. Glad you liked it, and how do you like the site cause it’s a little confusing to me. Ha

9 07 2011

I liked it, and it didn’t seem like you were rambling. Over all I find this site a bit confusing, it took me a while to find the forums and just in general the layout is a bit complex and not very simple yo follow but it’ll get easier I think with the more time spent on here.

14 07 2011

Thanks. So do I, and yeah that’s true.

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