5 Reasons I'm Thankful for My Team

5 Reasons I'm Thankful for My Team

A Word of Thanks to My Teammates
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Staying active and being involved in many activities is something that I have always cherished. They both play very important roles in my life, and I am extremely thankful for the many opportunities that I have had to be a part of sports teams and other extracurricular activities. To me, it is very important to have a good balance between school and other activities. Having your nose stuck in the textbooks all of the time is great and will get you far in life but building and having close relationships with people outside of school and through sports is a great way to make lifelong friends. I am not only thankful for having the opportunity to continue being involved in a sport while in college, but also for my amazing teammates. Below are a few reasons why they deserved to be thanked.



1. Motivation:

No matter what, they always know the right things to say and are always so motivating and encouraging especially when I no longer am able to motivate myself. One of the biggest issues that I have is that I am very tough on myself especially if I feel as though I let myself and my team down. No matter the circumstances, it is always nice to have a group of supporters telling and encouraging you to keep pushing yourself to do your best.



2. Confidence:

Confidence is something that I lack especially on the field. I often times feel like I do not belong because I am surrounded by a bunch of amazing athletes whose abilities far surpass mine. Typically I do not have a lot of faith in my abilities and I would like to thank them for this new found confidence that I have recently discovered due to them believing in me when I do not even believe in myself. If my teammates see something in me, then I must find the confidence to dig deep and live up to their expectations.

3. There for you:



There have been many times throughout the course of the semester when everything seems as if it is going terribly wrong. With a difficult course load comes stress and at times it was taking a toll on me. On many occasions, some of my teammates noticed when I was upset and were always there for me no matter what. They never failed to make themselves available in order to be a good listener and a good shoulder to cry on.

4. Responsibility:



If you know me personally you know that I have the potential to be the laziest person ever. Being involved in a team has allowed me to learn and gain a sense of responsibility. I owe it to myself, but most importantly my teammates to take responsibility and do what is needed to be done in order to become a better player such as working out in my free time and bettering my skills. I am also thankful for the many leaders on my team that are great examples of what it means to truly be a student athlete. Taking care of responsibilities in the classroom first before doing anything related to athletics.

5. Family:



Most importantly I am so thankful for the team dynamic that made the transition into college go very smoothly. It was nice getting to bond and get to know each and every one of my teammates both on and off of the field. Although there were times when the tension was high between us as a whole, I wouldn’t want to spend all of my time with any other group of people. We are a team, but most importantly a family that will stick by each other no matter what. Family is a value that is stressed for our team and I am so thankful that I was able to find a family while at school.

Cover Image Credit: Tyrah Cobb-Davis

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10 Reasons Your Big Sister Is The Best Person In Your Life

"There is no better friend than a sister, and there is no better sister than you."
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As much as I hate to admit it, my big sister might be sort-of, slightly, cooler than I am.

Sometimes. She's the one I call when I can't call mom and the only one in the family who can properly handle my attitude. Big sisters are the people you'd choose if they weren't already family, and here's why.

1. She is your first and truest friend.

Big sisters are (literally) there from day one. They see every dirty diaper, every bad haircut, and every melodramatic breakup. They deal with every bad day and drama queen attitude and still love you in the most unconditional way.

2. Her closet is your closet.

For some reason, her clothes always look better on you. Funny how that works, huh? With a big sister comes a big closet, and who doesn't love having a double wardrobe? I'd also like to take this opportunity to apologize for the clothes I will never give back (but I'm not really that sorry).

3. She knows what it's like to deal with your parents.

Anything you could possibly be going through, they went through it first. It's kind of like having an instruction manual or a key to the future. Either way, it's always nice to have someone who will always understand the struggle.

4. There are no boundaries.

Wanna dance around in your underwear all day? Cool. Life talks while she's on the toilet? Also cool. There's no awkward moments or changing in the bathroom with the door locked. There's just the kind of freedom that only comes with siblings.

5. Thanks to her, you know about all of the cool movies/music/fashion trends from years back.

Thanks to my sister, I have every Too $hort and Ludacris song you could ever think of downloaded on my phone. I've seen every cheesy '90s movie, and when a fad from 10 years ago comes back in, I already have the hookup.

6. She tells you like it is.

We all have those friends who tend to sugarcoat everything. Yeah, sisters don't do that. She's the first person to tell me when I'm making a terrible decision and that I really shouldn't triple text that boy again. She keeps it real with me and deals with my attitude, and that's why she's the best.

7. Her home is always open.

Sometimes you just need to get away from life and binge watch Netflix, and sometimes you need all of that plus your sister. She always has her door open when you're two seconds away from losing your mind, and she also has good takeout and a dog.

8. She knows what you're capable of.

My sister knows exactly who I am and what I can do. She knows when I'm not doing my best, and when I need to be set straight. She's always there to remind me who I am and what I'm capable of accomplishing. She's always been my biggest fan.

9. She's a lot cheaper than therapy.

For some reason, my sister always knows just what to say. Even if I don't see it at the time, she's usually right (don't tell her I said that). Big sisters are like wizards, somehow they always magically make you feel like life's gonna turn out alright in the end. If she wasn't already awesome at everything else, I'd suggest she be a therapist.

10. She will always be your go-to gal.

No matter the situation, she will always be by your side. There is nothing you could say or do to make a big sister leave, and that's why they're the best. Whether it's a speeding ticket, a mean girl or you just need to laugh, big sisters are always going to be there to lift your spirits and set you straight.

I couldn't make it without ya sis, I'm sorry for ratting you out on Thanksgiving that one time, and for running away at the zoo. Thanks for taking me to see Aaron Carter even though he's way too old to still be singing "I want Candy," and thank you always for being the best role model, sister and friend I could ask for.

Cover Image Credit: teaser-trailer.com

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As A Cardinals Fan, I Let Albert Pujols Go A LONG Time Ago

They say time heals all wounds, but is that the case with St. Louis Cardinals fans and Albert Pujols?

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It's hard to properly encapsulate what Albert Pujols meant to the city of St. Louis. He's without a doubt in my mind, statistically, one of the greatest Cardinals players of all time right up there with names like Bob Gibson, Ozzie Smith, and Stan Musial. His list of accolades in a Cardinals uniform is borderline unbelievable: Rookie of the year in 2001, 9x All-Star (8 consecutive from 2003-2010), 3x MVP, 6x Silver Slugger and 2x Gold Glove winner. Not to mention, he was an integral piece of two World Series victories in 2006 and 2011. The recipe was right there to continue his career as a Cardinal and retire an immortalized legend, but things somehow took a turn for the worst after the 2011 World Series.

Pujols was up for free agency in 2012, and even though the city was celebrating its 11th World Series title (second-most of all time) but the future of the team was in the back of everyone's mind. For context, Cardinals Manager and 3x World Series Champion Tony La Rusa announced his retirement in early November, just days after the victory parade.

Nearly a month later, Pujols announces that he decided to sign with the Los Angeles Angels for a record-breaking 10-year, $254 million contract. To say Cardinals fans were perplexed and shocked is an understatement. What could the Angels offer that St. Louis couldn't aside from more money and better weather, especially coming off of a World Series win? Regardless, the Cardinals never seized on the opportunity to sign Pujols to a contract extension, a mistake they didn't want to repeat with newly-acquired superstar Paul Goldschmidt.

I think what hurt most about Pujols leaving St. Louis as he was a Cardinals-bred player through and through. He was drafted in the 13th round out of the 1999 Amateur Draft by the Cardinals before making his MLB debut in 2001. That's been the Cardinal manifesto for nearly the entire Modern Era: draft or acquire young Minor League talent, develop them before implementing them into the Major League system. It felt downright hurtful that Pujols would opt for the bright lights of Los Angeles over a city that had every intention of supporting him

But with most things, time passed and Pujols eventually became a peripheral point for Cardinals fans like myself who would briefly re-enter their lives on the occasional article or ESPN highlight. So when it was revealed that the Angels will be playing the Cardinals in June at Busch for the first time since Pujols left, he was suddenly back on every Cardinals fan's radar again.

So Angels and Cardinals media outlets were abuzz, prompting this interview with Graham Bensinger during Spring Training and the way Pujols frames the negotiations were really peculiar to me. He said he didn't feel truly wanted by the franchise, but we'll never know the whole truth unless we were actually there. I do know one thing though, every Cardinals fan wanted Pujols to be a Cardinal for life and he would have gone down as one of the greats without a doubt in anyone's mind. He spent his best years in St. Louis though and helped bring us two World Series' and for that, I'll always be grateful.

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