Overcoming Setbacks

Ryan - Altoona, Iowa
Entered on January 29, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: setbacks
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Overcoming Setbacks

I believe in overcoming setbacks. Whether someone loses a job or gets a divorce, they must overcome it in some way. My football team started the season ranked 4th in the state at the beginning of the year. We had high expectations for the season. The biggest was we wanted to win state. My teammates also had individual goals and I had plenty as well. I was excited for this season more than any other seasons in the past.

Two days before camp my friends and I decided to go tubing for fun. We flew through the air and had a great time. But we went too far up and when we came down my knee hit the water and gave out. I had to stop. I thought it was just going to be a bruised knee or something that wasn’t serious at all. But when I tried to walk on it I couldn’t. I wasn’t worried that night when I was with my friends but the next day it still hurt.

I was scared out of my mind to tell my dad and the coaches that it might be something serious. My dad wasn’t that mad but the coaches were furious, which I expected. They told me to go to Darrin the trainer and he said all he could tell that it was loose and that something had torn so then I got really scared. He scheduled me for an MRI.

I went to the doctor not knowing what to expect. They told me it would take about an hour and I couldn’t move at all while they were taking the MRI of my knee. So I was just nervous about trying to stay still. If you’re claustrophobic, don’t ever get an MRI. It’s a small tube that reminds me of a coffin and it kind of creeps me out. I finally fell asleep in there and it was over before I knew it. They came back and it said I tore my anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), medial collateral ligament (MCL), and meniscus all in one. They told me to get surgery as soon as possible and if I tried to play my knee would just buckle.

I wouldn’t let it stop me though. I told Darrin and he was dedicated to getting me on the field. I worked out with him every day for Five weeks to strengthen the muscles around my knee to support the torn ones. We talked and he said the best way to support your knee would be to get a brace. So I got one; And it was huge. Every offensive lineman in college and pros wears them so you can just picture what it looks like on a cornerback.

I came back after missing five games, it was the greatest feeling I have ever had in my life. The last five games I played in were the most fun I have had playing football. Sometimes it would pop and give out and hurt like a son of a gun but it was all worth it in the end. We scheduled my surgery on December 9th. Since then all I have been doing is physical therapy with Darrin and getting my knee stronger and 100% for next season.

This was my setback and I overcame it. It may not have been as bad as other people’s problems, but I live and breathe football so it was devastating to me. Anyone can overcome a setback it just depends on how hard they want to work to fix it and get where they want to be.