I can honestly say (and I’m sure this is no shock to some) that I have been a pretty selfish person in the past. Some may still say I’m selfish, but if you’ve ever seen me with my kids that I coach, your whole perspective would change.
I started my coaching career in the spring of 2012 with ZERO experience. I was given some 6th grade girls (who have since turned into freshmen in high school). And as all teams go, there have been a lot of changes to our rosters and even our team name.
These (now 14 year old) kids have been a major part of my life these last three years. I’ve always known how much they’ve meant to me, and how lost I’d be without them. But it did not truly hit me until this past weekend…
I was asked by one of my kids to help her get ready for her very first high school formal. I was honored to be able to take on the “big sister” role for her as I have done for many of my players. Now, I’ve cried a few times with these kids in the past talking about how proud of them I was or because our AAU season was coming to an end. But this time, I started crying as I hugged this particular player right before she left.
Like, who the heck am I? Crying about a 14 year old kid, who isn’t mine, going to her first formal. What selfish 24 year old does that?
I was put on this earth to be a role model, a friend, a big sister, to coach, and to even mentor these girls. I’ve always known that in some capacity, but never truly understood the impact I was having on them as well as the impact they were having on me.
I found the reason for my existence, through this thing we call coaching. Something I originally got interested in mainly because I wasn’t ready for my basketball career to be over after college. These girls’ parents put their trust in a young kid they didn’t know who had no clue what she was doing. And within just two years it’s turned into me adding almost 15 more sisters to my family tree.
Believe me, I am not the greatest coach when it comes to X’s and O’s or game time decisions. But what I can tell you is that my relationship with these kids is bigger than the game of basketball. The bond I have developed with many of them over the years is something I will never be able to fully understand or explain to people.
And that alone is how I know I found the reason for my existence. I can’t fully explain to you why I love these kids. I mean they’re just kids. But because I can’t fully put it into words, shows me that I have found people I love more than myself.
That is how you can find the reason for your existence too. Whether it be kids you mentor, a significant other, a child, a pet… When you love someone or something more than you love yourself, you will see why you were put here on this earth.
And isn’t that what we’re all looking for anyway? A reason for why we’re here.
You may not have found yours yet, but I promise you, you’ll find it. And when you do, you won’t be able to explain it. It just is.