What We Keep Playing Means to Me

On Saturday, April 11th, Yahoo Sports hosted a one hour livestream called #WEKEEPPLAYING.  This virtual hangout session featured legendary female athletes, like Billie Jean King, Carli Lloyd, Katie Ledecky and Katie Sowers, who shared their insight on how they have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, while inspiring young athletes to keep playing through these uncertain times.  

What ‘We Keep Playing’ means to me

These three words, we keep playing, may seem simple enough, but to me, they mean everything.  They inspire me to just keep going, keep playing the sport I’m passionate about. Even if life pushes you down or people think you can’t do it, you need to persevere and keep going. 

For example, the sport I play is flag football. To be honest, I have always wanted to play tackle football, but there is a thought, a stigma that girls don’t know how to play football.  That we can’t throw far enough, that we can’t run fast enough, that we can’t catch.  So trying to get onto my school’s team wasn’t going to happen.  The boys didn’t even want me to play two hand touch with them or jackpot when they were playing in gym class or inter-murals. 

Although the constant rejection made me doubt my abilities and whether I was worthy to play the sport, it didn’t stop me for looking at other avenues where I could participate on a team and use my talents in the sport.  This is when I fell in love with flag football.  Flag football allowed me to play in a league with both boys and girls and enjoy a sport that I love so much.  No one judges you in flag football.  Everyone cheers each other on.  We (both boys and girls) work together as a team to better ourselves and each other.  Flag football has given me confidence and reminds me that I can do whatever I put my mind to.   

The lessons I’ve learned from persevering 

The things I learned from this situation in my life, is to never give up on yourself, always have the courage to try new things and always have the best people to cheer you on no matter what.

We keep playing means that we all need to keep going, have courage, have strength and never back down in the face of adversity. If you keep going and do what you are passionate about, you will be an inspiration to others.

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