A Small Event Equals a Greater Outcome

Vanessa - Chicago, Illinois
Entered on June 4, 2009
Age Group: Under 18

Waking up early, Mondays and Wednesdays, for gym is quite exhausting. However, it was not just any gym; it was girl’s cross-country gym. But for me it was more than just a gym; it was a team. Freshman year I wanted to be involved in a sport, so cross-country seemed the easiest. The first few weeks were easy. But then cross-country season was coming. We started running longer distances and at a faster pace. It was extremely hard for me to keep up, since I did not take the easy days seriously. My legs and side began to ache after each practice. Time flew by fast, cross-country season was here. Our coach brought up our first meet. Meets were usually during the weekend, so we had to wake up early to get to school and take the school bus to the meets. I was excited yet nervous about our first meet. I did not know what to expect. When we got there, I looked around and saw so many teams representing different schools. We settled in a spot and rested until it was time for the first race. Girls raced first then the guys. There are two races for girls and guys: the Junior Varsity and Varsity. Time was ticking. It was almost time for the Junior Varsity run. We did warm-ups and ran a lap around the area. When it was time, all the JV girls lined up ready to begin the race. As I looked around, I could see the focus and determination the girls had. To me it was just a race, but to them it seemed more then just a race. Then boom, the gun shot and we started running. As I was running, I could feel the adrenaline in my body just pulsing. About half way through, I started to slow down. From the corner of my eye, I could see the guys and varsity girls from our cross-country team cheering me on. All of a sudden, I got motivated. I picked up my pace and finished my first meet strong.

From then on, I started taking cross-country seriously. Every meet we had I got faster and faster. Then the unexpected happened. It was our last meet for the season. I was running, almost finished with the race, when I started slowing down. I could not run anymore. My body felt extremely numb. I felt like everything was just spinning. Then, according to my doctor, I could not run because of my health. So, I could not run in cross-country anymore. But, I believe that whatever you join, you have to stick it out through the end. Therefore, although I could not run, the team still considers me part of the team. Now I am known as cross-country’s number one fan. I go to all their races and cheer them on. So, as cross-country seasons come and go we are not only a team; we are a family.