6 am, I stand on a block, serious but still half asleep, and I need to get in, no time to waste. I push off the wall as if I am being rid of all concern. I rediscover this realm that I have revisited on countless occasions with the same excitement as the very first time when I was only 3 years old. Beneath me, blue lines on ceramic tiles guide my never-ending path, with the occasional formation of a T to remind me of my progress. Spontaneously, my arms and legs begin the motion they have memorized, and I find myself streamlining my way through the parting waves. I am powerful here; I am free; my mind is at peace. Hungry for one more second, one more, and when its gone, another, and when it’s a record, its only the beginning. I’ll keep training and knock even more off. The hunger to win and the thirst for national and Olympic triumph fuel stroke after stroke, each pull and each push. Pain and exhaustion were never and never will be uncomfortable in the slightest, but rather the sweetest and most fulfilling forms of satisfaction. I feel blessed to be able to experience such a beautiful sport that’s been a necessity in my life for as long as I can remember. Underwater I am home, happy and inspired, as if each training is another opportunity to meditate to grow more as a swimmer and a person.
I endured a shoulder injury when I was 11 years old at my first ever Egyptian nationals. About a year later, I started swimming gently again and thanks to my motivation, my parents, the help of several doctors, rehabilitation and physical therapy making my shoulder stronger than ever, I returned to swimming and eventually became victorious once again. This injury made me a stronger person, able to endure many things and survive the tougher moments in life, overcoming obstacles on the way. It made me more determined, proved to me that I was more powerful than I had thought and made me realize just how intense my passion for swimming is. I learned that, by working harder and smarter than everyone else, and never losing sight of my goals, and never, never giving up, I am capable of achieving anything. Belief is key.
A major goal of mine is to find a stimulating program that fits me, both athletically and academically that still has an inspiring and energizing team environment. I believe my hard-earned work-ethic and competitive, committed and determined mindset will allow me to demonstrate my passion for swimming in this program.