I recently expressed to my boyfriend how saddened I felt about no longer being an “athlete.” Since I was 5 years old I had spent my life in gyms, on fields, and in uniforms. Each time I did a get-to-know-you activity I always shared the story of how my dad built a balance beam in my living room so that I could practice. Softball and sports were who I was, but they are no longer who I am.
As the years passed since I graduated, I felt that part of me slowly drift away. I no longer needed her. Every time I picked up a book instead of a glove I felt her dim. Each time I took a sip of wine instead of a swing of the bat another light went out until slowly I couldn’t bring her back.
And so, that made me sad. I felt like I was searching around for a part of me that had been lost to time. The athlete in me was only there when I needed her to be and lately, I didn’t need her at all…
Until I stepped on the softball field again today.
As I was teaching the girls the first drill I realized that I had awakened an old friend. The athlete in me, deep in slumber for an extended time, opened her eyes once again. She was beautiful. She was confident. She was exactly what I remembered her to be.
She wasn’t lost at all.
While it’s true that I may not need the athlete that resides in me as much as I used to, I take comfort in knowing that she’s still with me, and all I have to do is pick up the glove and she’ll be there.