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Every school sports team coach has favorite players. I was not one of those players. I was the one who was never picked for anything. The one who was always picked last. Basically they didn't care enough about me to fully help me improve because I didn't care enough to try.
When I first started playing softball at the tender age of 4, I was excited. I was full of hope that I'd go to college and play for a college team. As time went on, my love for the game slowly started to diminish. The older I got, the worse I became.
Now when I say I got worse, I mean that I couldn't take the criticism. I couldn't take the yelling, the criticism from my own coaches, coaches I had been with for years. I just stopped wanting to hear them. My love for the game was so small I stopped improving in my skill for it.
When I reached my freshman year of high school, I was thrown into the catcher's position, a position I had never played before. A lot of work goes into that position. When you're catcher, you are the person guarding the home plate. You have a full visual of the field. If the pitcher cannot lead, you're next for it.
Your pitcher is the Leader, you are Second, first base is Third, and so on. I was not cut out to be a Second. Not on that field nor on that team. I tried and tried, but I could never do it. I had plans to try and try, but in my heart I felt that it wasn't worth it. That was not my time or place to be a leader. I know I can be a leader, but this was not my time.
I stayed in that sport for my family's sake. That was a mistake. I was torturing my own self when I could've gotten out, found another hobby, and even graduated from high school early. I stayed because I wanted to prove I wasn't a quitter, except I didn't need to prove to others when I, myself, knew what would help in my life.
Except I didn't do any of that. I stayed in a sport where I wasn't improving, wasn't feeling it, wasn't even trying to be a leader when no one else stepped up. All I was doing was bringing the team down. I knew it too, but yet I still stayed. I should've left to let the team do better. I should have done something to let them improve and found myself another hobby to do or go back to an old one to improve on.
The moral of this little life story of mine is if you're in a sport and you know you're holding the team back, leave. Leave because you already feel it in your heart that you no longer have any fight left to keep going in the sport. Do what I couldn't and let the team improve without you while you go and improve on yourself.
Maybe you can't just leave, because your family has a hold so instead, talk to your coach. At some point during your time on the team, you probably developed a friendship with your coach. If not your coach, then a trusted teammate. Just don't stay on a team you're holding back.
What you want is more important than what your family or anyone else wants. Improve yourself before letting someone else "improve" you; don't let anyone live vicariously through you when you have your own dreams.
Your life is your own, your dreams are your own. Leave the toxic places behind.