College is really hard, and at times, it's overwhelming. Sometimes it feels impossible to play a college sport and maintain decent GPA. You have too much homework, you barely get any sleep, and you have absolutely no social life. You find yourself having to give up trips to the beach with your friends for games that you don't even get to dress out for. Everyone tells you to keep working your butt off and that it will all be worth it one day. But honestly, at times, the stress is too much, all the pressure of college makes you want to walk away and give up something you've worked your whole life for.
I've been there, trust me. I know how bad it sucks. I know how it feels to want to give up. It has been over a year since I've been able to be on the field all because of one ongoing injury that has resulted in me having two different surgeries.
Over the course of my year-long rehab, there have been countless times that I have wanted to give it all up. I wasn't able to touch the field; all I could do was watch...for an entire year. For an athlete, that is pure torture. I watched for a whole season and then I was able to be released. After a summer of working out and trying to get back to where I was, I returned to school excited for the fall season. However, after a few practices, I knew I didn't heal properly. Therefore, I had to have another surgery and was put back out.
After my second surgery, I was pretty down about everything. Everything that could go wrong with my ankle went wrong. I wanted to quit. I felt as if there was no point in even trying to get back on the field. Would I even be able to play like I used to? Would I even start? Would I hurt myself again? I was scared.
After battling with myself, I knew I needed to push through because, in the end, I would regret giving up something that I love and have worked so hard for. If I gave up, all the hard work would have been for nothing. So, I knew giving up was not an option.
Playing in college is an experience that you will never forget. You shouldn't have to explain why you want to keep playing to one of your friends. Tell them to hush when they give you a hard time about not being able to hang out with them on the weekends. When your parents keep telling you that academics are more important and that your athletics are hindering your academics, tell them to hush. Keep telling yourself that it will all be worth it in the long run.
You've gotta learn what it is like to work so hard for something you want so bad just to be let down. Life isn't fair. You've got to accept that. Everything will not always work out the way you want it to. Push through it.
"But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded."
-2 Chronicles 15:7
College sports teach you to stay patient, to keep pushing even when you have no energy, and that everything will work out the way God planned for it to. There is so much to gain from college sports. Your teammates become friends that you will never forget. You share memories that you'll never forget. Whenever you get overwhelmed with the pressure of school and athletics, think of what it would be like without your teammates.
One day, you won't be a college athlete anymore. You won't have to wake up for 6am workouts. You won't have problems walking because of how sore you are. You will have more weekends to hang out with your friends. You will have more time to study in grad school. You will finally get to take that nap. But you will never get to step on that field as a player again. Whenever you want to quit, just think of that little girl who was so excited for her first day of practice. Would she want you giving up?