My parents are huge influences on me as an athlete and a student. My dad is the main reason I started playing soccer, and without my mom, I wouldn’t be the person I am today. When I started playing, my dad pushed me to work hard to learn more about the game and get better over all. He was my #1 supporter, and I loved making him proud. In seventh grade, I lost my dad to cancer. I felt lost with no direction, and I knew that nothing would be the same without him. School became ten times harder, and soccer didn’t seem as fun anymore. A little while after he died, I realized that the only thing I could do, and the only thing he would’ve wanted me to do, was work harder with school and soccer, so I did. I have trained every single day since, and it has only made me a better person over all and has also taught me so much about life. my mom also has a big influence on me if I didn’t have her, I would be so lost right now. Watching my mom lose my dad and how she moved forward in life really affected the person I am today. She has taught me how to move on from the past, not to feel sorry for myself, how important my dreams are, if I want something I have to work harder than everybody else for it, and so much more. I am beyond blessed to have the mom that I do. I work so hard in school and in soccer because I want to make her proud, and because she works so hard for my sisters and .
Throughout my career so far, besides losing my dad, I’ve had many setbacks that have affected me mentally. From not making certain teams I thought I should’ve been on, to making the ECNL team and not being able to play because of money, to having to split game time with another keeper and not being able to help my team succeed, my mentality has been all over the place. I think the main reason I struggled with having a good mindset in the past is because I was working so hard for so long and thought I should have been rewarded from the start, but that is not the case. I learned that success is a process, and it takes time achieve your goals. Something that helped me overcome these obstacles were great books about mindsets and my desire and love for the game itself. Over the years, these setbacks have taught me that being a goalkeeper is 90% mental and no matter what happens, great save or a mistake, you have to put it behind you and focus on the next play.
Soccer is something that I know I will never lose passion for; the more I play, the more I fall in love with it. I love it because it allows creativity to shine through any type of player, and no matter what, there is always, always room for improvement. When I play, I get this feeling of happiness and comfort, like soccer is what I was created to do. I love the adrenaline that rushes through my veins when I make a save and that feeling of relief my fans and teammates get when the ball is in my hands instead of the back of the net. Growing up playing soccer has taught me so many life lessons that apply on and off the field. It has taught me my work ethic is going to take me so much further than my talent and how important discipline is on the field and in the classroom. I think one of the most important things that soccer has taught me is leadership. On the field, I am always the one directing play, leading warmups, and helping my teammates get better. It also shows in the classroom. When we do group projects or activities that require a leader, I will always step up to the job. I am so excited to keep moving forward with my soccer career, especially at the collegiate level, and I can’t wait for more life lessons that soccer has yet to teach me.