This I Believe

Adryana - Albuquerque, New Mexico
Entered on November 7, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: sports
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This I Believe

I believe that you don’t have to be involved in sports to feel good about yourself.

All my life my dad has told me that I have to play a sport. As a child I started off in dance; that didn’t work because my grandpa got real sick and my parents had no time to drive me to my lessons. I loved dancing and if I had continued maybe I might to this day be dancing.

When I was six my dad signed me up for swimming lessons. I remember hating it because I didn’t catch on as quickly as some of the other kids did. My dad would always criticize me on how I could do it better when the truth was I never even really liked it. When I was about eight he put me in golf lessons, another sport since he thought that I should be in a sport. It turned out golf was very boring to me so I stopped that. He got upset and then suggested I should try tennis. He signed me up and I started taking lessons. By this time I was starting to feel that I wasn’t good enough just being myself and not having to play a sport but I kept up with tennis to keep my dad happy. When he wanted to sign me up for another season of tennis lessons I said no. He got upset and told me that I have to do a sport. After all, he did sports all his life. When I got to middle school I decided I would try the sport, soccer because my dad told me I should join a team at my school. It was about half way into our season and I decided to quit because I felt pressured playing on a team. To me it was too much competition and I am very self-conscious when it comes to competing. My dad was angry with me and told me I was a quitter and that I have quit everything I have ever done. I had really started to hate sports and the pressure I felt from feeling like I needed to be in a sport.

In eighth grade I decided to try and break away from my fear of being on a team and I joined my school’s volleyball team. I really enjoyed playing volleyball but I still lacked the self-confidence. I continued and finished the season. It turned out that our team won the district championship that year.

After going through all these sports and never really discovering my passion for one, I realized I don’t like sports and they don’t make me happy. I was too busy trying to please my dad that I got blinded from what I really believe, and that is that you don’t have to be in a sport to feel good about yourself. Pleasing yourself and pursuing the things you love is what makes you who you are.