Tuesday, October 6, 2009


Do you remember I just said I was going to start running and enter a race in a few weeks? Well, a little obstacle hit -- blisters. Not from running, but from dancing in heels with my girlfriends. I got a really, really bad blister on the ball of my right foot. I have been limping for two days. So no running. Maybe no race at the end of the month; we'll have to see.

I am so frustrated, and can relate to how Andrew must have felt during his senior year of high school. I think it was the third game into the football season when he broke his hand. It wasn't bad, but it really hurt if he tried to play. So he sat out a couple of weeks. He could still kick, though, so he did that much. But it caused some problems with him and one of the coaches who didn't think he was tough enough for football. Andrew walked off the field one day and wasn't going back. It was traumatic for him and for all of us. Family, friends, everyone we knew was enjoying watching him play. So I called the head coach and just asked him to talk to Andrew. The next day he went back to practice.

Andrew wanted to do everything on the team, to "be the man", but he couldn't. He didn't get the opportunities he wanted, but he never gave up. He came back and played his heart out, win or lose. Somehow the team managed to get a playoff game, even though they had a losing record. Their prize was to play the number one ranked team - Inglewood. Andrew wrote an essay about that which I posted in this blog. During that game, Andrew broke his leg and was out of sports for the remainder of the year...soccer, baseball, everything.

Still, he was selected and honored as the Most Inspirational player of that football team, and later won a scholarship for his dedication to sports and desire to continue in college. He tried to come back from his injuries and play baseball, but then it just didn't work out. So much of his life and his personality were wrapped around sports, I just wonder if that didn't push him a bit further out of reality. His ego and confidence and overall sense of worth were shattered.

I had hoped that the sportswriting would pull him through it. He poured himself into his articles and wrote every sentence with the sense that it matters to not only the people he was writing about, but to the people reading it: his audience.

I think about that as I compose my essays. This is for me, for Andrew, and for you.