Thursday, September 11, 2008

The Debate Champion

In high school I played four years of basketball. For some reason, unlike the other sports I played, I was never a "powerhouse" in the good ol' b-ball game. Maybe it was because my coach, who was an African American but named Mr. White, always pulled me out after I missed a shot, or maybe because, when you got down to it, I was just a lonely white girl trying to play a game I was never intended to master. At any rate, during my freshmen year, I was christened with the nickname of "Chicken" because I would never shoot. Consequently, for the next three years, I tried almost everything to overcome my fear of shooting and embarrassing title.

One of the things I would do during the year to practice would be going to my church and shooting baskets for hours in the gym. I remember one time, after a disappointing game, I made my mom take me over to the church to practice. After thirty minutes of shooting I still felt incredibly frustrated and disappointed with myself. I remember my mom came in and watched me for a few minutes. I remember she was wearing this enormous green winter coat that looked like a comforter and a tennis warm-up underneath. After watching me miss a few shots in a row, she asked me if there was anything she could do to help.

Now, as a side note, I should mention my mom is not exactly a "huge" athlete. She's very athletic, but didn't grow up playing sports. So, when my mom asked me if she could help, I have to admit, I wasn't exactly confident with her expertise. However, she looked so sincere, I thought I would try and explain to her my problem with shooting. Sheepishly I explained, if I was wide open I had no problem shooting, however, if a defender put a hand up or ran towards me I would hesitate and not shoot.

As soon as I finished sharing my phobia, my mom dropped her purse and took off her big coat. She then asked me to start shooting. Before I knew it, my mom charged after me. Like always, I hesitated. My mom then backed up and ran towards me again, but this time yelled, "Shoot!" Which I did. This exercise continued for the next thirty minutes.

From that night I didn't turn into Kobe Bryant, but I did hear my mom's voice every time I touched the ball...and well, I did start to shoot more in games. Who knew a debate champion from Utah could be such a good basketball coach?

Thanks Mom...and Happy Birthday.


Megan said...
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Megan said...

So, I like your blog. It's funny and I'm finally getting to know you! BTW, I just started a business renting wedding gowns and I wondered if you would be interested in letting me rent out your wedding dress? If not, that's totally fine, just thought I'd ask as your dress is GORGEOUS!
Take care,
Megan (Soulier) Lindstrom