This I Believe

Priscilla Elise - Stafford, Texas
Entered on May 4, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30

Basketball Will Always Be a Part of Me

Give your all in every opportunity that you get because your hard work will be rewarded.

That is one lesson that I have learned from the sport of basketball.

I still remember the first time that my dad used to teach me how to shoot the basketball. This one sport has been in my life for so long, that I can’t go back to one specific date when I first started playing the game.

My love for the game came from watching my three brothers play it. The thrill of the pace and skills of the players intrigued me. Before I knew it, you would never see me without this ball of leather and air.

I never really thought much about what this sport meant to me. Thinking back, I realize how it has brought me so close to my family and has become a part of my personality.

“Priscilla, why are you crying? You played such a great game!”

I hated hearing that. I was a competitor and hated losing. It was a disheartening feeling to know that winning was so close and so possible but victory fell and slipped right through my hands.

I played summer recreational leagues, ymca, aau, middle school, freshman, and eventually played for three years on my high school’s varsity basketball team. I wasn’t a superstar player, but a role player, stepping up when I was needed.

Senior year came around. The season was over, and I had to get ready to let go of the only sport that was basically my life. But I couldn’t let it go.

I began to worry about how I was going to pay for college since there were so many children in my family. My parents had to move my older brother back in town to a local college, jumping from four different schools in two years, since the cost was getting to high for us to afford.

No colleges ever contacted me about basketball before, but my high school coach was able to set up an individual tryout date at a college a few hours away.

I was put against the conference defensive player of the year, but I maintained my focus knowing that this was my one chance at such an important opportunity.

After tryouts, the coach called me into his office.

I could not believe my ears. He wanted to sign me on a full ride basketball scholarship!

I knew my lifelong dedication to this sport would be worth something someday. My high school coach would always say, “You need basketball more than it needs you.” The more I think about it the more that makes sense. This simple sport taught me dedication. My hard worked carried on to school, where I received numerous awards and state honors. This sport literally changed my life and provided help for me in my future. I thank God for making this sport, more than just a thrill, but for making it a part of my life.