This I Believe

Kristen - Ames, Iowa
Entered on November 19, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: sports
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What We Learn From Each Other

I believe in playing sports. You can’t replace what you learn in a sport with anything. Whether you are an all district player or best friends with the bench, all of the experiences you get to have with your teammates are memories that stay with you for the rest of your life. I have been lucky enough to be on many different teams. They have helped prepare me for so many aspects of my life.

Learning to work well with others whether they are my friends or not has been an important life lesson for me. I know I won’t be able to be best friends with everybody and not everyone will like me. Sports are such a good way to force yourself to get along with people who aren’t your friends.

Teammates I have had over the years are irreplaceable. I sparked friendships with so many amazing people, and I know without sports we wouldn’t be near as close. They had a common interest with me, that sport. Also, they encouraged me to be my best. People without a team don’t understand. My senior year of volleyball was a great example of this. We had a bond that spread to many different parts of our lives. I can remember how we always knew everyone’s capabilities. I knew what the libero would be able to get and what hitters in front of me would help out with. I also knew what kind of passes the setter liked the best, and which passes were harder for her to get to.

Also, we could say the right things to build each other up. For example, I could count on my team to tell me to “just get the next pass” when I was having a rough night. Also, I know what to say to keep their confidence up while helping them as well.

The other bond we shared was the common goal that we all wanted to win the game and play to the best of our abilities. I always knew my team was going to give 100 percent. Especially being seniors, we had a desire to win so badly that kept us going. I will never forget the last district game. The feeling we had to win was so evident to everyone in the gym. The drive was clearly shown through our intense eyes. When we lost, it was a sad moment, but it was bittersweet because we could look back on all of the amazing times we shared.

Athletics may not be everyone’s forte, but that isn’t always important. Having a bond with a team is an irreplaceable experience. That is why I think it is so important to play sports.