Poem: Injustice

Impressionism

This poem is like looking at an impressionist painting. Looking straight on, it’s more of a blurred image, but once your eyes adjust, you can see more clearly. It’s pure imagery, so brace yourself.

I remember seeing snowflakes fall during French class and then experiencing that sense of disappointment when it all disappeared by the end of the day. And that image stuck with me while on the bus heading for a basketball game. It could be considered injustice, living in the South, that it takes a lot for the flakes to stick to the ground.

In the downtown area of where we lived, we’d walk around for festivals and stuff. And I remember noticing how when the grass was wet, it looked the same as cooked spinach. The kind of cooked spinach that comes frozen in those little boxes and, to a little kid, looks completely disgusting. So that’s what I’m referencing with “spinach blades.”

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Feeling lost in history

In tenth grade I took honors English and history (Ancient and Medieval history, to be more accurate). Both classes thoroughly kicked my butt. Over the summer we had a massive research project for history. I consider having to look up 30-40 people and events and write maybe half a page on them explaining their significance a massive project. Again I wasn’t good with doing research. Some of them didn’t have their own entry in encyclopedias or other resources I looked at, so I didn’t know where else to try. And for whatever reason, it still seemed like a cop out or failure to ask the librarian for help. I didn’t do very well for that project. That wasn’t a good introduction for the class.

I suppose I could have dropped the class upon learning about the summer requirements, but I didn’t. Maybe I didn’t realize that was an option.

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Only freshman girl to make varsity

For several weeks after school started, we had basketball conditioning. Lots of running. This was mostly student-led by upperclassmen. I believe the state rules indicated the coach couldn’t be involved when basketballs were used. So we could do non-ball-related activities in her presence. Stuff like suicides, wall sitting to work the lower body muscles, getting into defensive stance and shuffling across the court.

We had a small group of girls try out for the team, to the point where I figured everyone would make the team. Nope. Still a few students were cut. We had the bare minimum of people for varsity and junior varsity.

I was the only freshman girl to make varsity, but that doesn’t mean I was ready for that level.

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Ninth grade starts with basketball

girlsbasketball2
Not my team … but we did tons of running.

I wanted to go the local Catholic high school. But the one in town closed many many years ago. So it meant having to attend the school forty minutes away, across state lines.

Like I said, I wanted to go. But it was sad to say goodbye to the friends I had met in public school. And going to a school that far away offered new challenges for getting involved and socializing.

During one of the diocesan-wide basketball tournaments that I played in middle school, the girls basketball coach had come to see me play. He was very excited to have me play when I reached high school.

During the summer before ninth grade, I learned that anyone interested in girls basketball could join up for voluntary team conditioning. So Mom drove me over and dropped me off for morning sessions.

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The eighth grade steal

When I described some of my experiences of playing basketball in public school (find that here), I described a moment when I made a steal. I wasn’t sure if it had been during seventh or eighth grade, but as I reread my eighth grade journal I discovered an entry. Here, in all of its glory, is my rendition of what happened.

I’ve never been one to describe myself as a great storyteller. Mostly as a matter of struggling to figure out what details to include and what to leave out, not having that natural sense of how to dramatize a moment verbally. But it’s a different kind of thing when writing it out. I can write out what I want, rather than trying to gauge how a story is being received in the moment, attempting to make spontaneous adjustments.

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Becoming a Lady Ram

rossview-middle-school-girls-basketball-3

First, I need to offer a glimpse of playing basketball during sixth grade. It was pretty routine with practices and games. I do remember jumping the bleachers. Seriously we jumped from the floor up to the next bleacher, and then continued jumping up.

It looked something like this video, except we were jumping on bleachers and not the stairs. It required a higher vertical jump. And the part I remember most is how scary it was; I was afraid of completely missing the next bleacher. I never did miss, but that scared feeling never went away.

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6th grade: The year from hell

School makes her bored
MamaMia (teaching daughter not to be a bully)

Note: Not all of what I’m going to share is specifically sensory related. However it all interconnects in showing how being self-conscious about areas where I struggled and felt different impacted my self-confidence. While this is humiliating to recount, it’s necessary in order to show the full picture. So it needs to be shared.

Also, I’m not calling anyone out by name. That’s not the point of writing about it. So anyone reading who happened to go to school with me at this time, don’t try to figure out who I’m referencing. Many people do stupid stuff when they’re this age. Kids are mean. It’s unfortunately universal. … Moving on.

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Trying to be active and learning new skills … Fore!

To uncover your true potential you must first find your own limits and then you have to have the courage to blow past them.

Picabo Street

Along with therapy and different group activities, I began to venture into the world of sports. This was a tricky process. Some held my interest more than others.

The world of physical activity is its own form of therapy. Sports teams in particular are a unique platform to teach skills and develop as a team and on an individual level. You get to learn good sportsmanship and cheer on teammates.

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