Now that I am 18 years old and a member of the Napoleon High School basketball team, I know that hard work will pay off in the end. At a very young age, my parents would always take me to watch the Napoleon basketball team. My parents would always make comments during the game stating, “Someday you’ll be out there playing,” and those comments drove me to not let them down. From this young age, my parents taught me to believe that if I worked hard enough, it would pay off. During those countless games, which I attended, I watched, from up in the bleachers, Napoleon legends such as Chad B and Luis G. From that point in my life, I made a decision to work as hard as I could to become a varsity member of the team someday. All my life I have worked very hard at basketball and dedicated a great amount of time towards improving.
Now that I am a senior at Napoleon High School, our team is having great success on the court. My four years at the high school have gone by so fast, and I have fulfilled my dream by playing on the varsity level. In fact, I have played at the varsity level for all four years and helped turn the basketball program around. I believe the reason for our success is because of the dedication to succeed of our entire team.
From a very young age, my friends and I were very close and had a unique competitive attribute. Our competitive edge was revealed when our senior class would go to the gym on a daily basis to play the game we loved. The pick-up games would last for hours and always end with a winner and a loser, and this would always seem to be a problem. To make the stakes even higher, my father decided to reward the winning team with Faygo. The winning team would always receive the pop of their choice while the losing team was forced to drink root beer. Seeing as everyone hated root beer, this took our competitive edge to the next level. Winners boasted like they were the NBA champions while the losers were humiliated, and the taste of defeat was an awful root beer.
Now that our senior class is having great success, we all look back and see how the competitive games in the gym are now paying off. We have also learned that competing against one another has linked our team with a special bond. This bond helps us fight for one another when in the trenches of practice or losing on the scoreboard with an opponent. Knowing that there is someone who is going to fight with you to the very end is very reassuring. Now that the season is ending and playoffs are just around the corner, our team knows why all the hard work for the last 12 years is finally paying off.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.