Hello, part 2 in my installments, I know it hasn’t been very long at all since the first blog, but I really enjoyed writing it. So in this discussion today I’m going to talk about something that has had a major role throughout my whole life. Sport.
Ever since I was little my parents always pushed for me to try to do the best I can in order to hopefully find one I was good at. The first sport I ever fell in love with was football. Like many other kids my age at the time, I was attracted to the pace, the joy, and the friendships that are birthed during training. At a young age I was quite a good player, I was a striker, which if you don’t follow football it was my job to score the goals. I was quick and had an alarmingly accurate shot someone who wasn’t even 10. But the problem I faced was the physical aspect of the game, I was always the short kid that was constantly tripped and fouled. I’d finish a game delighted with scoring a few goals and winning the game, however I’d finish with bruises covering from my knees to ankles. You’d think that’s just part of the physicality of a game of football and to grey up about it, and usually during a match day you don’t mind it. But what really did stop my enjoyment of the sport was the fact that during midweek training it was always my teammates that caused the bruises and burn marks as I was tripped, kicked and pushed. Causing me to slide across either the concrete or grass. So I think as you can read this I think you could understand why my love for playing the game stopped for a while. Did I realistically have the ability to get somewhere within the game? Well yes I honestly think I did, I’d play in games where the opposition parents and coaches would come up and tell me how I did, as well as for my primary school I’d forced my way into the first team when I was 2 year groups below, once I left I was the school’s top scorer. And always left the pitch with a beaming smiles my face.
Football wasn’t the only sport I grew up playing. I also had a strong family background of playing cricket in my dad’s side of the family. Growing up it was a constant battle between whether I wanted to focus on cricket or football, but I think I got the balance relatively ok. I played for my local team and was one of the main bowlers in the side, the difference between cricket and football for me was not being the spearhead of a team. And at my young age I got jealous as it was the coach that relied on him, whether it be to take wickets or score the runs with the bat. Looking back now I understand my selfishness and that I was like my teammates in football and hated myself for it. But there’s no point really looking at a 11-year-old version of you and getting angry because that short little annoyance is what turned into you. The kid I mentioned as the best player has gone on to be part of the county’s academy system and as a person he was kind, never arrogant so all I can really do is wish him well.
In terms of sport that I did but took less of my time and interest were swimming and athletics. Swimming is something that my parents forced on me at an early age, so I could develop a “skill for life” but waking up every Saturday at a ridiculously early time to swim up and down an ice-cold pool never really gained my interest. Athletics in the other hand was something I loved. After the football stopped I needed to find something else I was passionate for something I could look forward to after school and athletics was it. I started off in sprinting but as I aged it became apparent that longer distances were my preferred races. I remember my first real event was the 1500 metres in a little county meet up, I finished second. But since that the distances grew until I become enthralled by cross-country. Despite being by far not the best I enjoyed it and could see myself being involved in the sport for a significant time but after the first year the injuries started. I’d always experienced little aches and pains, sometimes the runners next to you caught you with their spikes or elbowed you out the way but they were just part of the fun. What finished my short stint in cross country was my knees, I don’t know how it started, it just did. I’d finish events and be in pain that brought tears to my eyes. Putting me out of action for a short while, and gradually the pain grew and the time it took to recover also grew. I was forced to stop.
Looking back now at my relatively sports filled past, I have regrets and things I treasure. The feeling of scoring a goal to win the game for your team never changes never mind the importance of the fixture, that wicket you take the six you hit makes you feel on top of the world. Beating your personal best in the 25 metre freestyle or crossing that finish line first, gives you the biggest kick. But what do I regret? I regret not having the courage to stick around with football as I honestly had talent, I regret the arrogance I showed when not being the first pick at cricket and I regret not giving my body the time to heal and rest as I still feel these aches to this day.
However all I can really do is thank sports and this that encouraged me to get involved with it, from the true friendships I formed within them, the support and nurture that a coach shows to you and of course to my parents, the two people who would attend all of my events whether it be a several hour drive, or to whether it meant they stood in the cold rain for what must have felt like forever watching their son chase a football around a pitch.
Chapter 1 Part 2
Thanks again for reading, I ask once more that if you could lay off criticism for language and grammatical errors that may appear. 🙂