There's nothing like 'your' sport, the sport that runs through your veins. The sport that motivates you each and every day to be better than the day before. The sport that consumes your thoughts from the moment you wake up, until the moment you go to sleep. And, the sport that will be a part of your life forever.
If you're lucky enough to have found 'that' sport, odds are, somewhere along the road, you had a one-in-a-million coach who helped inspire your passion for your sport. The coach who devoted countless hours of their time to help you become the best you could possibly be on and off the field. The coach who transformed the way you see your sport, the way you see life, and the way you see yourself. The coach who had your back through absolutely everything. The coach who you love like family. And, the coach who you could not imagine your life without.
To that coach who made me the person and the athlete I am today...
Thank you for believing in me.
No matter what, you never doubted me or my abilities. You never stopped pushing me, supporting me, and encouraging me. You believed in me so much that I believed in myself, too. Thank you for always reassuring me of your support. Thank you for believing in me and my dreams, and for never letting me settle for anything less than my best.
Thank you for teaching me true strength.
You have shown me what it means to be strong physically and mentally. You pushed me to my physical limits and developed me into an incredible athlete; and, in the same way, you pushed me to my mental limits and developed me into an incredible person. You taught me how to be brave in the face of adversity, and how to use my hard times as fuel to become better and stronger. Thank you for giving me the strength to keep on fighting for my dreams, no matter what.
Thank you for being by my side every step of the way.
You have been a part of this journey of mine for what seems like forever, and I wouldn't have it any other way. There's no one else I would rather have had as my coach through all the ups and downs. You've seen me at my worst, at my best, and everything in between; and you continued to help me thrive as an athlete and grown as a person. You never gave up on me, and because of that, I never gave up on myself either.
Thank you for inspiring me.
I look up to you more than you will ever know. I couldn't ask for a better role model. Thank you for inspiring me, in every sense of the word. You have and you always will inspire me to be the best version of myself. I hope you have learned something from me because I have learned so much more from you than the skills you taught me at practice.
Thank you for being there for me.
No matter the circumstance, you've always been a phone call away anytime I've ever needed you. You cared about me on a personal level, and you went above and beyond what you "had to do" as a coach in making sure I was always okay. Thank you for putting your athletes' needs above your own.
Thank you for being patient with me.
I'm sure there were plenty of times you straight up wanted to kick me off the team for one reason or another. But, thank you for sticking it out. I am so grateful for all the kindness you've shown to me, especially when it would have been easier to get angry with me. You never let me get too ahead of myself, and you never let me lose sight of the dreams I was working towards. Thank you for being patient with the process it took for me to develop into the athlete and the person I was meant to become.
Thank you for helping me achieve my dreams.
You have put in so much work into making me the best I can possibly be at my sport. You have dedicated so much time to tirelessly helping to shape me into the athlete and person I am today. Thank you for giving me all the tools I needed to push my body to its limits in order to be able to achieve all the goals I set out to achieve. Each time I push myself at practice or in a game, I don't do it for myself; I do it for us and all the hard work we put into making my dreams a reality.
Thank you for teaching me what it means to be passionate.
Your passion for coaching lit up the gym. You always came to practice with a positive attitude, ready to help your athletes work hard to accomplish their goals. There was no doubting you loved coaching with all your heart. Thank you for teaching me the importance and the value in genuinely loving what you do. Thank you for passing your passion for your sport onto me.
Thank you for picking me up each time I fell.
Whenever I had a bad practice or a bad game, you were always right there to lift my spirits and remind me that good things take time. I could always count on you to say the exact thing I needed to hear in every situation. You never let me get down on myself when times were hard; instead, you reassured me that there is nothing I cannot achieve. Thank you for comforting me when I needed to be comforted, for motivating me when I needed motivated, and for picking me up each time I thought I got knocked down for the final time.
Thank you for the memories.
You've given me the best experience I could have possibly asked for. I will forever look back on the time I had you as my coach with a smile on my face. Thank you for giving me incredible memories I will cherish for the rest of my life. I will never forget you.
There aren't enough words to fully express my gratitude. I hope you always know that I would not be the person I am today if it weren't for all your guidance, love, and support. You have such a kind soul, and I am forever grateful to know you and to have had the privilege of learning from you. You gave me a home away from home. I am so grateful our paths crossed because I am forever changed by everything you taught me about my sport, and, most importantly, about myself. Someday, when I'm a coach, I hope to mean as much to my athletes as you mean to me.
I hope I've made you proud over the years.
Sincerely and always grateful,
Your former athlete.