Tonight I decided to withdraw from my Stats class this semester. It was too late to drop it so I'll receive a "W" in it, but I feel that it's for the best. I've never considered myself a quitter and I still don't actually.
All through high school I played basketball for the school. As a senior I was told when I was put on the team that if I worked hard I could see more playing time. Well as the season progressed no matter how hard I worked I saw less and less playing time. I was almost always the first one on the court and the last one off the court. I dedicated my life to working as hard as I could not to let my coach or teammates down and to improve as much as I could. I missed out on dances, mutual occasionally, and other social activities with my friends. I spent every minute I could in a gym working to be better. None of it helped and by the end of the season I was sitting the bench the entire game each time except for Senior Night when I started and played a whole 30 seconds. I felt insulted. I paid a fee to play, my parents were paying to get the family in to each home game, my incredible dad traveled the 3 hours to Challis to watch me sit the bench. The week before district tournament my parents came to watch practice so they could see me play since I would not get any playing time during the game. My coach blew up. He yelled at me, he yelled at my parents, he said some really nasty things in front of all my teammates and coaches. All I could do was cry and leave the gym. Later that night the coach, my parents, and I all had a meeting with the school principal. I cried the entire time as I expressed my feelings of anger, hurt, and sadness. I felt abused, but no matter what I couldn't bring myself not to finish out the season. I never quit.
Even now I struggle with this experience. I cried as I wrote this, same as I do anytime I talk about it. I still struggle with forgiving not only the coach, but many of my teammates who never did or said anything about the situation, who never noticed me. But as painful as this experience was/is, I learned and am still learning many lessons from it.
1. I was/am reminded of what an awesome dad I have. He never gave up on me. He supported me in everything I did even though at times it was hard for him to see how bad I was hurting. Being able to ride home with my dad instead of riding the bus on the 3 hour ride home from Challis was one of the best gifts my dad ever gave me. And how can I forget my dad sending a balloon bouquet with my favorite candy on the first day of district tournament. He is amazing and I love him beyond belief.
2. I am still learning forgiveness. It may take a while, but I'm working on it.
3. This one isn't really a lesson, but more of a lifestyle. I know that as a coach I will treat my athletes with respect and as human beings. I will not focus on only the "star" athletes, but the ones that might not be the best, but have potential if someone will just give them a chance. My whole coaching style is opposite of the way I was coached on that team all in spite of my coach.
4. Last I'm going to mention and most important to this post, I learned that there are times when you need to cut your losses and fold. It's not "quitting" in the way that we think of "quitting" as a bad thing. There are times it is appropriate. There are times it is necessary for our well being. Withdrawing from my Stats class is one of those times. I have not been able to make very many classes because of illness of the kids or myself. I'm taking 12 other credits (4 classes) besides this one, all with just as much or more homework in it. Between everything I have to do and being behind enough I wasn't going to get caught up (not on homework, but on understanding the concepts) no matter how hard I worked, it was time to cut my losses and fold.
So even though I'm no longer taking stats this semester I don't consider myself a quitter because a quitter is someone who gives up quickly when it gets hard without trying to make it work. I worked hard as long as I could and now it's time to fold.