This I Believe

Jessica - Marietta, Georgia
Entered on October 14, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: community, sports
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I believe in the power of a team. I believe that one’s success can go much further with the help of a team. When you feel as if you can go no further in whatever it is you are doing, there is always that one support group behind you to keep pushing you through. I know that I can constantly believe in my team.

From my personal experience as a competitive gymnast, I know what it’s like to be a part of a team. I have many a time relied on the motivation and support of my teammates to get me through injuries, difficult meets, and other obstacles.

Gymnastics is just as much a mental sport as it is a physical sport, and for this reason I have let my fear get to me. My mind would tell me to do something but my body would just not do it. Fear would constantly set me back, and sometimes I would find myself wanting to quit and just give in to my fears. Naturally my teammates told me I would be fine. They told me that the worst that could happen would be a small injury, such as a broken arm. This may not seem like the best advice, but their words gave me so much more than that. Just hearing their encouragement gave me the motivation to go ahead with the skill.

I did not always rely on my team though. When I first started as a higher level gymnast the stress of the four hour practices, five days a week was too much for me. I spent almost more time with my team then I spent with my own family. I thought it was ridiculous and shut myself off from them. I came to realize that this only made things harder. I had nowhere to go when I needed the comforting words of another person going through the same thing. Finally I accepted the fact that these were the people that I would be spending most of my time with.

I have been through some of the best and worst times with my team. Just when I thought that I couldn’t handle the stress that gymnastics put on me, my team convinced me that quitting would not get me through it. They always told me that giving up was not an option and I learned that you feel so much more confident when you overcome something. They have left an imprint on my life more than anyone else I know, and they have become a second family to me. They are the people that know me inside and out. They accept my flaws and they deal with my many complaints.

Now I look at the lower level teams and the fights that they get in and I hope that they will soon learn what they can do for each other. I know that they will eventually realize the importance of a team and will come to accept each other, it just may take time as it did with me.

I believe that a team is one of the most important things in life. You can’t go through life without anyone, and your team knows this. They may bother you sometimes and you may want to scream at them at times. But in the end, they will get you further than you will ever get by yourself. I believe that when you feel as if you cannot go on, a team will pick you up and carry you all the way. I believe in the impact just one group of people you call a team can make on your life. So you might as well embrace them while you can.