The last time I was able to write about something I liked was over a month ago. I decided to take an extra month in school to get ahead, honestly not fun at all. From spreadsheets all the way to case studying it was time-consuming. It came to a point where I considered deleting the blog, but I honestly can’t stop analyzing soccer on a daily basis. Luckily there is a reason for it all. Here is a glimpse of a side of me that not many know about.
THE 2002 WORLD CUP
One of the biggest sporting events in the world took a heavy toll in my life, both emotionally and personally. Why? It would be a historic year for my country (Ecuador) as they would attend for the first time ever. The qualifying process built my fan aspect for such a sport as I saw the best national team performances for two years. It also gave me the chance to see Brazil for the first time. However, one man stole the show and became my idol ever since. The tournament wasn’t the best for Ecuador as they only won 1 out of the 4 games possible. Brazil was the complete opposite; they managed to beat every single team that they faced while putting on a show. They were a joy to watch, Ronaldo did what he wanted and helped them win the championship. In the end, his performance was by far the most memorable up to date and soccer would be my obsession since then.
LIVING WITH MY DISABILITY AND SOCCER
My life would continue to take its course with soccer as my main hobby. However, I had matured enough to realize I would have to live with a constant enemy. It would become a permanent reminder that I would never be fit enough to do many things that others could. The diagnosis of cerebral palsy had devastating effects, in many cases, many didn’t live a long life or were destined to a bed. I was lucky enough to have the most supportive family anyone could ask for. They helped me overcome many of the obstacles as a kid; I managed to learn how to walk and attend school. My grandfather, uncle and my friend “filimon” managed to teach me life lessons through soccer training without me knowing.From self-control to self-organization all the way to physical awareness and mental strength These are lessons am happy to still remember till this day.
Life would take me to a distant land, where I would live most of my low points. The language barrier, as well as a reality check, welcomed me with open arms. It was here that I learned that my life was almost a lie and that my future was uncertain. The middle school and high school phases were perhaps the most difficult ones on a personal level. I learned that maybe I would never find love as people were superficial. It also taught me to be cold and distant if I didn’t want to be taken advantage of, all of this and soccer was the only thing that cheered me up. During those years I discovered clubs like Barcelona, Manchester United along side the last few Ronaldo match showcases I was lucky to witness.
He managed to help me recover from a surgery I went through. How? Well, I used to see footage of his broken ligament injury and how he came back inspired me to recover quickly. I had no grandpa or uncle or friend to train me this time so I used the wall and some friends to gain back trusts in my ability. My analyzing aspect would kick in recent years thanks to the Barcelona dream team lead by Guardiola. The rest would slowly be revealed to me with time. The truth is, soccer managed to give the moments of happiness I would fail to get from life itself. My ability is limited and I’m aware of that but whenever I play soccer all of the bad moments go away. It’s as if my body knows no limits, becoming a different person as long as a soccer ball is with me. I know I sound pessimistic but let me acknowledge the fact that I have come across wonderful people, many of them became great friends that continue to support me throughout my ups and downs. In general, I’m a very difficult person to understand and many of the friendships I have formed actually happened while playing soccer or because we shared a similar interest towards it. Whenever I look back at it everything seems ironic but hey soccer has managed to open a few doors for me without me knowing.
I have managed to overcome and live with a few aspects of my disability. I still don’t accept it fully because I believe that if I do it would be setting limits to anything I could achieve. This could signal me out as selfish but it doesn’t matter because it has been something that has kept me from breaking down multiple times. What the future holds is uncertain, at my age most people have at least their love life figured out. In my case I’m willing to accept that love is something that I will have to live without, sucks but I have to be open to any possibility. However, my main objective is to have a decent future when the time comes. This makes my academic aspect crucial, sure it’s difficult but not impossible. Many may not agree with my perspective on many things but you can’t please everyone. In regards to soccer, there will always be that “what if”, mainly because I would have preferred to do something related to it. These are just one of the millions of questions I ask myself even if the truth is difficult to handle. However I am sure of one thing, I know that no matter what happens, soccer will always manage to lift my spirit in this path called life.