Feb. 8, 2005
Okay, okay, I know I said I was going to continue writing these journal entries – and well – I have not held up my part of the bargain. I won’t provide any excuses. So much has happened in Seminole land, and I didn’t even get a chance to talk about my Christmas break, so I figured I would catch ya’ll up on the latest and greatest. So let’s go back a little over a month (man this semester is flying).
Christmas break, what an amazing time! I had the most relaxing and enjoyable holiday season in good `ole Texas. I wish I could capture every moment in words to describe the feelings of being at home. Since I started writing these journal entries, I have begun to assess situations, feelings, and events to use them for my entries. It was unreal to me how many people commented on my journal entries while I was at home. I was so completely flattered to hear that people have taken the time to read them. Thank you to the loyal readers of the Sarah File!
I had the opportunity to visit the Herefordites and that mean so much to me. Sadly, there just wasn’t enough time to have lunch with everyone. I missed out on seeing one of my good friends, Sarah Brown. Sarah is in sixth grade and came to some of the volleyball camps I put on this summer in Hereford. What was special about this young lady, and really grabbed my attention, was the way she listened to what I would say, and her willingness to follow my lead without hesitation. She intently listened to each instruction, and made “coaching” what it is supposed to be: a reward.
“It is one of my biggest struggles, to step back and know that I am being used for a greater purpose, and I am only to be a mirror and reflect a positive image.”
There is not a better feeling than knowing that you are helping someone, you are a light, a means of improvement. It is so easy to get caught up in this fact. But, it was not about me. I had to think that I was just the middle man. It is almost as if I owe it to my high school coach, Brenda Kitten, and my Florida State coaches (Todd, Rita, and Kirstine). I am merely their handiwork, and it is my responsibility to reflect what they have been to not only my volleyball career, but my character. It is one of my biggest struggles, to step back and know that I am being used for a greater purpose, and I am only to be a mirror and reflect a positive image. Could you imagine the effects that this philosophy would have on a playing court or field? What if everyone put aside their personal gain for something higher: the realization that it is not about the end of the year awards or the statistics, but the intangible things, and the group’s benefit. What a lofty concept. It seems so simple, but hey, we are only human and that spotlight is awfully enticing. I read a great book over the Christmas break, It’s Not About Me, by Max Lucado. If you need something to smack you right back into your place, I would recommend reading it.
The time at home was good for all the Seminoles. We all enjoyed a little time away from Tallahassee and some time to regroup and prepare for spring workouts.
In media guides, or profiles of any kind, they always ask the question: “What is something that most people don’t know about you?” My long time friend, and previous Metro Star AAU basketball teammate, Kami Webb, reminded me of this question when I saw her over Christmas. My answer is that I would love nothing more than to be a ballerina. Ever since I was two my mom and I have attended the Lone Star Ballet performances of the Nutcracker in Amarillo at Christmas time. We had not been able to attend the past few years because I was playing in basketball tournaments around Christmas when I was in high school. We picked up right where we left off and made the trip to watch the performance this year. It was a mother-daughter event, and we had such a wonderful time together. The scenes I knew by heart were breathtaking, and in my fairy tale world, I thought about my ballet dreams. Ha! I’m not saying that I would be a good ballerina, graceful isn’t a word most people would use to describe me, and I’m pretty sure that my volleyball build would limit my ability to be maneuvered by a puny little man in horrendous tights, but why squash my dreams – you never know! (Yes, I know I am absolutely ridiculous – who dreams about being a ballerina? ) Sooo…. That was Christmas… and now fast forward to now!
We just finished up with four weeks of individual practices and morning weights and conditioning. We have been hitting the weight room hard at 6:30 a.m. along with position practices in groups of four, twice a week for an hour. This time of the year is very crucial. It is a time of preparation and growth. As a team we have high goals and our coaches are working us hard to achieve these goals. We begin our team practices this Monday, February 7th.
The spring is also a time for unofficial visits. We have had several recruits in town. Recruiting is obviously very important to any team and something that has to be taken seriously. You don’t just consider a player’s athletic accomplishments, give campus tours, and ask questions. You must observe the little things, like see what kind of person they are and determine if they would fit in the mix. You can tell a lot about an athlete and the kind of player they are by the person they are. The way someone acts off of the court definitely bleeds into the way they act on the court.
During the spring we have a little more time on our hands and more opportunities to help out in the community. I absolutely love community service that allows us to interact with kids. This weekend I helped with the story hour at Barnes and Noble. We read the book Elmer. This book is about a patchwork elephant and how he is special because he is different. We also made puppet elephants with paper bags and felt scraps! These little kids made my day! I was also a “celebrity contestant” at the Girl Scout cookie eating contest. How much better could community service be? Now, this was my second year participating in this event, and you would think that with my cookie eating experience (and trust me – I have a lot) I would have been able to annihilate the competition – but that was not the case. The rules go like this: you have 10 shortbread cookies on a plate and you are not allowed to use your hands. The object is to eat all ten cookies the fastest and the first one to whistle upon completion wins. So, I’m chowing down, I’m on my fourth cookie, and I hear a whistle! I was left in the dust! The weather guy from the local news station is a phenomenal cookie eater! Ha! Just when I thought I had figured out my strength – eating cookies – I was knocked right back in my place! (Laughs) All in all – a great time!
Oh – a story to brighten your day. The other day I was walking on campus and it was one of those dreary, rainy days. There was a girl walking the opposite direction of me with a green umbrella, a cute green hat, and these green rain boots over her jeans. She had a huge smile on her face. She was walking along, and when ever she came across a puddle, she didn’t by pass it, she jumped – and I mean jumped – right in it – splashing in her rain resistant shoes! I almost went up to her and told her how much I admired her. How awesome is that? I gotta get me some boots! EMBRACE the circumstance!
Well, I promise to do a better job at keeping my word. Have a wonderful day!
God Bless and Go `Noles!