Transitioning from sport to sport

I have been faced with a challenge that many other athletes here at FHC might have to go through: leaving one sport for another. 

Now, you may say that this was a strain I put on myself; that is entirely true. However, it was a choice I made for myself and my well-being. 

I originally played baseball. I had been playing for about ten years, both on unorganized and organized teams. Once high school came around, I was faced with the sad truth that I was to quit baseball. I could not play baseball because I was a girl. My skills would be lesser, and the boys would beat my capabilities. In turn, I decided to play softball in baseball’s absence. 

Softball started as a different, new experience for me. I liked it, but I also hated it at the same time. I wanted to make the most of it, for maybe I would end up loving it. Constantly, I would practice and practice in hopes of creating a new era for myself; no new life was found.

After the season, I came to terms with the fact that softball was not enjoyable for me. I genuinely had no love for it like my love for baseball. I missed baseball, that was for sure. Many decisions arose, and I was faced with the decision of  which sport I should play next spring; was I to fight for baseball, continue softball, or try something new?

I made the decision to venture into something new. In the spring that ensued, I joined lacrosse. Lacrosse was a completely new experience for me; I had practiced and played just for fun with my friends before, but I never understood the rules or anything along those lines. Therefore, switching sports was ultimately an arduous process for me. 

It was difficult because I had to learn an entirely new set of rules—it felt like learning a new language. At first, I thought it would be easy; ideally, I would pick it up quickly and maybe even blow the coaches away with my beginner’s luck. This was not the case whatsoever. I faced a massive backlash because I thought I would be fine. I struggled with the rules initially, and even in the game, I did not know what to do or where to go. It was something else. 

The rules are difficult to grasp, and the team is challenging to become a part of. I knew many people on the team, but there were so many new characters to discover, which included the coaches. I did not know how to communicate with the coaches or what they expected from me. The upperclassmen were intimidating, and as a whole, the team just felt like a family that I was not a part of. I felt like an outsider. 

Joining new sports and creating a new path for yourself—especially at the high school level—is a huge impediment in the life of an athlete or student, especially mine. But with all of these struggles, there is light to make of it. High school brings more responsibility, drama, and anything else you could think of.

Joining a sport is complex and challenging, but it helps build empathy and helps you experience things that you may never have experienced before. I miss baseball, that is for sure. But the feeling of joining lacrosse and the feeling of disliking softball showed me how I could make my own decisions and do things better for myself. So yes, switching sports was strenuous. It was not easy. But in the end, it benefited me in ways I never thought possible.