Happy New Year, Bonne Année, Feliz Ano Novo!
With a New Year comes new thoughts, adventures and experiences to be had. Looking back at the past decade, I have a lot to be thankful for. Particularly, the last 7 years - which have helped shaped me into the independent woman I am today. Through the ups and downs and highs and lows of my adult life, I’ve realized that aside from my family, the one thing that has remained consistent in my life is basketball.
Basketball is a huge part of who I am. The day I started walking was the day I started dribbling a ball. From following my dad to men’s league games, to wearing oversized NBA jerseys and playing with the boys at recess, the sport has always been in my blood. I was destined to play the game.
I’ve given the sport most of my life and in return, it’s allowed me to travel the world expense free, experience new cultures, receive a free education and now, earn a fairly good salary 8 months of the year. At times it can be an isolating, nomadic lifestyle that gives me too much time to think; which can be both a good and bad thing.
With so much spare time on my hands and having friends and family so far away, I often tend to analyze past events, former flames and play the horrible ‘what if…’ game. It’s not that I’m living in the past, but sometimes can’t help these thoughts from creeping into my head. Especially if I’m having a bad day or happen to be sidelined with an injury…
I can’t imagine a life without playing basketball. But since returning to Luxembourg after Christmas break, I’ve finally started to put some thought into my future after ball. Maybe it’s because I still have a holiday hangover (my two weeks at home were easily the best 2 weeks I’ve had for Christmas/NYE in the past 7 years), or because my mom has slyly been insinuating that I should start to set down some roots, or perhaps it’s just due to the fact that I wasn’t able to workout (knee) over break and get out the huge amounts of aggression and emotion I’ve been feeling since being injured.
This feeling scares me – it’s one I’ve never felt it before. Part of me is excited to see what my basketball future has in store, but there’s also another part of me that is ready to move on and try out something new. I love Europe. I love meeting new people, experiencing new cultures, exploring different cities and savoring each country’s uniqueness. I love playing basketball competitively and am fortunate enough to be paid to do so. Without sounding too conceited, I feel as though I’m just peaking as a player and am too good to stop. The thought of not returning to Europe is overwhelming and actually makes me feel somewhat queasy.
Basketball is a big part of me, but it doesn’t define who I am as a person. With a minimum of 4 months left here in L-bourg, I’ve got plenty of time to evaluate and decided what’s next. In the meantime I'll be keeping myself busy and continually expanding my options by traveling, taking 2 online Public Relations courses from BCIT and attending French classes, which begin at the end of January.
Basketball Update: It’s been exactly 3 weeks and 4 days since I sprained my MCL. I’ve been lifting weights (sans legs) and riding the stationary bike without any pain. Today I jogged around the court while the team practiced and ran a bunch of lines without any sharp turns. My knee feels pretty good aside from any lateral movement. I’m getting physio therapy every other day and I am hoping that in about 2.5 weeks I’ll be ready to take the court again. Wish me luck!