“The most exhausting thing in life is being insecure” (Anne Morrow Lindbergh)

February 1, 2008
By Katie Strickland, Fayetteville, GA

All throughout my adolescent years, I have been insecure and uncomfortable with myself. My life changed forever since the occurrence of an eye-opening experience that I will always look back and reflect on.

Like every Thursday, a practice filled with stunts and double downs, we warmed-up as usual. Little did I know, one incident would have a major impact on my whole cheerleading career. Replacing my teammate, absent from practice that day, I willingly substituted as the new and improved back-spot. As the flyer spun around twice in the air, her elbow carelessly collided with my mouth. Something fell into my hands; I fell a sharp pain but did not realize what just happened until the screeching of my teammates rung in my ears. Disengaged from my gums, my two front teeth popped out. Tears overflowed my mouth gaped open silently. As the coach sprinted toward me in a panic, I struggled to keep the blood in my trembling hands instead of on the blue carpet. Waiting in the front office, I sat there with a blank, senseless stare on my face. Everything from there on remained in an obscure blur. Terrified, I remembered the dentist.

Riding in a slow paced, cold tears rolled down my cheek s I remained motionless, frantically thinking of the worst case scenario. Lying in the gray patient chair I recall watching a Disney movie under the influence of laughing gas. As I obediently opened my numbed mouth, the dentist began drilling to start to painful operation. Nervously, I positioned myself there in a the small, strange room for hours on end, while he inserted my bloody teeth. When he completed his task, I awoke from my delusional state of mind. After the dentist, my mom escorted me to the out-of-control emergency room to chick if the impact from her little elbow gave me a concussion. Getting the results as negative, I finally arrives home at midnight. A strong impulse overcame me, as I wanted to attend the Friday night football game, the following night. Although my conscience told me otherwise, I still trying to forget the unbearable pains, lead myself with dignity and pride. I walked self-consciously through the home gate of Whitewater High; I kept my head down watching my feet, one in front of the other. The next thing I knew, all of my friends rushed toward me like a wave from a roaring ocean. The greetings, the hugs, and the sincere sympathy from my friends changed attitude regarding the situation. For the first time, I realized everything would turn out alright. On Saturday, I cheered at the Blue Devils football game with my head held high.

While carefully cheering, everyone cautiously watched me to sure my safety at all times; they made sure I kept my adrenaline. All prohibited activities included jumping, running, tumbling, and stunting because of an assumed possibility my fragile teeth may dislodge themselves once again. Physically I controlled myself calmly, but mentally I continued supporting my team in every possible way. After my accomplishments that week, I realized that even though my looks had changed, my attitude, my confidence, and my outlook on life should not. Everyone holds their own insecurities, but learning to overcome mine taught me to never doubt myself.

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This article has 1 comment.

on Sep. 6 2008 at 9:23 pm
it has some grammatical errors, but overall it is well written. thanks for noticing it. =]


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