Resilience is an essential quality to prosper as a person. The ability to bounce back after an extremely stressful time is what makes an individual stronger than the rest. My name is Driena Muca and I currently live in New Delhi, India. I had moved to India when I was twelve years old and left my whole life in the United States behind. Moving across the world at such a young age taught me that resilience is something needed or else I would not make it far in life. Before moving, though, I was unconsciously applying the idea of resilience to soccer my whole life.
When I was only six years old I had begged my parents to quit dance lessons so I then could start playing soccer. Playing on a co-ed team for my small town, the theme of resilience was first introduced to me. Being taunted from the boys, not only from opposing teams, but my own team, lit a fire of determination inside of me to prove that just because I was a girl did not mean I was not able to play at their level. Every soccer game I was excited to play for my parents and maybe even show off a little to the boys in order to force them to utilize me as a valuable player to the team. This confidence I had gained by being like the boys quickly died in seventh grade when I had tried out for my girls school’s soccer team. I did not make the A team and all of my passion for football immediately died in that moment. I thought I was awful at football and did not play for my town’s team that same year as well. That very same year I had found out I was moving to India which provided a lot of mental struggles for me as I did not want to leave and start over. It had felt as if everything around me was falling apart and I had no control over it whatsoever. This dramatically changed though after my move into eighth grade.
Eighth grade has been one of the most important years in my life. This was the year where resilience became apart of my character and personality. Academics had never been a struggle for me. I was obsessed with learning, being enthralled with subjects like maths, science, and Mandarin. This drive for learning reflected itself with my good grades. Not evening thinking of sports at all, eighth grade is when I had my heart set on being a doctor. Not only my collegiate goal, but my life goal would be to have a medical degree and pursue medicine. In a period in my life where I felt very helpless, I was determined to dedicate myself to helping others in any way I could. My passion for science and my compassion for human life both would be satisfied by being a doctor.
In the same year of my first year in India, I had decided to try out for my schools middle school team and high school JV team. At first I honestly did not want to try out at all, yet I did and made both teams. When I put in effort, I got the results back which also manifested itself when I was the only freshman on the varsity team in high school. What changed was when I decided that although I cannot control where I move and what happens to me, I can control how I react to situations and how I persevere in them. Soccer is my passion and my outlet from external stress, and it is honestly just really fun to play. I want to be able to continue playing and improving and winning with girls with the same desire as me. What makes me different from other recruits is that I have experienced so much in the past five years that many people don’t experience in their whole life. Many of the experiences have been damaging, and many experiences have been eye opening, but every single one taught me how to bounce back even stronger and work harder for what my end goal is. I am not afraid to put in the work that will give me the results I want. This includes becoming a doctor, and being the absolute best soccer player I can be. I am not scared of failures or road bumps that may be presented because my resilience and work ethic will make sure I won’t let that destroy who I am.