General

In my youth self esteem was a fleeting transparent ghost, being an athlete made it a tangible thing I could hold on to.

General

Being an athlete changed my life, it gave me my first experience of being a visible person in the school for a positive reason. I was still bullied of course, but now there was respect coming my way too. I think that it was from that respect I learned how to respect myself, not fully perhaps as I should have, but at least get the idea that I mattered.

General

I was more proud of being an athlete than doing well in English, Math or Science. Those subjects never gave me a shield for emotional self protection in the school community - sport did. I guess it was a good thing to get addicted to. It was good luck that I found it and worked on it.

General

As a young athlete I was the only girl who had to run against the boys because the girls posed no challenge, I'd jog and come in first. The boys found it odd that I was there with them, but once we started running they could see why I was there and most of them couldn't keep up either. It gave me a chance to accept not coming in first every time too, I think that kind of humility is good for the soul. The ego needs comfort, yet it needs to learn to support the egos of others too, to learn that being a good sport feels good too.

General

He said my strong muscles come as a result of my troubled start in life, that my body assumed this world was one where strength mattered, that one day I'd need to fight to survive. That's evolutionary biology for you, we adapt to the environment we are born into. Luckily, thanks to the way memories work and a degree of PTSD, I have no idea what that was. It made me a great athlete though. It gave me a way to gain respect and better health.