“First I’m shocked. Then I’m angry. Then I get ready for the next shot.” That was my answer to my aunt's question about how I feel when someone scores on me.
As a goalie, it took me time to get to this understanding--to learn that things don’t always go perfectly. It’s not that I don’t strive for perfection--I do in everything in life, be it hockey, school, playing drums, bass, and guitar in my band, or even playing board games with my family. But I’ve learned that things don’t always go the way we want, and it’s how we react to those setbacks and how we work to be better that matter.
During my short time playing, I’ve won, lost, and had great games and not-so-great games, but I have always worked hard and tried to learn through it all. This resiliency has helped me climb from a squirt 6 team my first year playing hockey and move up a level every year to the point of starting for the high school Varsity team as an 8th grader and making a Tier 1 AAA National team. While that progress on the ice is great--and I still have work to do to get even better--the lessons learned there have helped me be a more resilient and understanding student, friend, sibling, and teammate. I have learned that not every day will go well and that everyone will struggle now and then. However, it is how I react to my struggles and how I work to help others get through their hard spots and assist them to be better; as I get better myself, that makes a winner. This is perhaps the most meaningful way my time in the crease has helped me be a better version of myself, which I hope to continue becoming as I move through college and into a career as a zoologist.