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What inspired me was that I have had the same injury and I know how it feels to also want to make a team. So I tried to combine the two.
“There are 12 seconds on the clock and the Wildcats need to score or the Hurricanes will win.” I heard the announcers as I sat on the couch and watched basketball with my little brother, Al Douglas.”
“Who do you think is going to win?” asked Al.
“I don’t know,” I said blankly.
“Mike, you didn’t even try to answer my question,” said Al frustrated.
“Here comes, Wilson with the ball with 5 seconds left on the shot clock!” yelled the announcers. I saw Dad on my left side of me getting into the game and he been talking about this game for a few days now. He was rooting for the Wildcats to win this one, but I think the Hurricanes are going to win by shot clock. It has been a great game and plus its Friday, so I got to watch the whole game. It’s too bad that my sister and Mom weren’t there to watch it. My older sister, Heather is in her room, doing whatever she does. She wasn’t really into basketball when we were younger. Heather was more into Volleyball when we were younger and she has even made the Volleyball team at her high school as a sophomore. I hope I make the basketball team next year when I go to high school. My mother was at work and I believe she works at as a waiter at some restaurant. Mom and Dad were the ones who got me to like basketball, and then I got Al to like basketball as well.
“Three…two…one!” yelled the announcers. I saw Wilson shoot behind the three point line…he’s going for the win!
“And…it goes in!” yelled the announcers.
“Woo! Let’s go!” screamed Dad. Yep, that’s typical Dad for you. He is always hype when it comes to sports.
I saw Al’s jaw drop and he looked shocked, “But there was like 3 dudes guarding when he shot that,” said Al.
“That boy, Wilson, clutch,” said Dad, “he’s going to the pros.”
“You just lucky that the Wildcats have Wilson,” I said jokingly.
Light gleamed through the window, shining on my face. Al ran towards the door and yelled, “Its Mom!” Al at the door and opened it excitedly.
“Hey Al,” I heard Mom say as she came into the house giving Al a hug. “Hey guys,” Mom said looking at Dad and me.
“Hi Mom,” I said to Mom as Dad waved at her.
“How’s your ankle, Mark?” Mom asked.
“Its fine,” I answered. I’ve was in a cast for weeks to recover my ankle, then I went to a boot after the cast. The boot allowed me to walk without using the crutches and I take them off in a week.
“Well, I’m going to my room,” I said. I wanted to lie down and relax. As I walked through the hall, I saw Heather on her phone, as usual. She turned her head and looked at me as if I were messing with her.
“Boo!” she said annoyed. I turned my head and went to my room; I don’t know why she has an attitude today.
I sat down on my bed thinking, “I only have one week until I take off my boot!” I turned on my T.V. to see SpongeBob on and I lied down on my bed to watch it. A few minutes later, I heard footsteps walking towards me. It was Mom and she stopped at my door.
“Mike, I heard there are basketball tryouts in about a week or 2 and I wanted to know if you’re interested,” said Mom.
“Yes, of course,” I said excitedly, “But, where is it?”
“It’s at your Middle School” said Mom. I felt relieved, but worried. What if my ankle is too weak? What if my ankle isn’t all the way healed?
“Alright” I said. Mom walked away and I felt a really worried. My heart stared to beat faster and my bed under me started to feel hot and I couldn’t stop thinking that my ankle will hold me back.
“You’ll be alright,” I heard a voice next to me. I flinched to my left, it was Al.
“Don’t sneak up on me like that!” I said angrily.
“My bad,” Al said slightly laughing, “I know that you’re worried about this, but you’ve got nothing to worry about.”
“Really, why?” I questioned.
“Yeah, you are a really good basketball player and I know that this ankle thing made you lack in practicing basketball, but you taught me not to give up and I know you could make the team.”
“Don’t mention it” Al walked away as well and I feel a lot better, in fact, I can’t wait until I can walk on my own.
“Wait, Al!” I yelled.
“What?” Al asked.
“Can you turn off my light?” I asked. He flipped the light switch and walked away again. I can feel my eyes get heavy minutes later watching more SpongeBob and I feel asleep thinking, “I will make the team.”
The week felt pretty quick, Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. After school on Friday, I grabbed a basketball flyer before I got picked up by Dad to go to the doctor.
“Dad, I got the paper for the basketball tryouts” I told Dad
“Let me see it,” said Dad as he grabbed the paper, “So, it starts at Monday after school, two hours of practicing, and only one day of tryouts.”
“I heard that the basketball season was delayed and that is why it is only one day, but I don’t know why it would be delayed.”
We arrived at Al’s elementary school to pick him up and saw Al talking to his friends. HONK! I heard as Dad pressed the horn. Al was telling his friends he had to go when he saw us.
“You didn’t have to honk at me” said Al as he got into the car. “Sup Mike, hey Dad” Al said
“Hey” we both responded. I looked at the sunny, bright, and beautiful environment through the window and I was thinking of practicing basketball again, but that was just going to have to wait. After like 5 minutes of looking out of a window, we finally made it to the doctors.
“Finally, were here!” said Al relived.
“Yep, were here” I said as we walked into the building.
“Oh, hello Mr. Douglas.” said the lady behind the counter.
“Hello, miss,” Dad said, “Is Mr. Jones available?”
“Yes, at the second floor, room 213”
“Thank you” Dad said as we walked to the elevators and pressed the elevator button.
“Mark?” I heard Al next to me.
“Yeah?” I asked.
“You want to race?” Al asked.
“When I still have my boot?”
“It’s pretty much healed, isn’t it?”
“Let’s just wait another time, alright” I said as we got into an open elevator. Dad very slowly pressed the button next to 2; does he not know that I really want this boot taken off?
“This elevator is kind of slow” said Al.
“For real” I agreed. The elevator doors finally opened and we walked out to find room 213. As we walked through some narrow halls to find room 213, the walls looked newly painted and felt really smooth against my fingertips.
“Hear it is” said Dad as he knocked on the door. A few moments later, the door opened and behind the door was a white man that looked like he was in his mid-20, his hair was black, wearing glasses, and he wasn’t half bad looking guy. He had a doctor coat on with a nametag that read Mr. Jones.
“Right on time, Mr. Douglas,” said Mr. Jones as he shook Dad’s hand, “Please come in.” We walked in and sat down at the chairs next to the “doctor bed”. Mr. Jones sat down at his desk and got on his computer.
“Am I getting my Boot off?” I asked Mr. Jones. I saw a picture of an ankle x-ray on his computer.
“Well, according to the x-ray that I see of the improvement of how your ankle,” stared Mr. Jones, “Congratulations, you get to take off the boot.” Happiness and warmth filled inside me that I almost screamed. “But, I also recommend you to wear this.” said Mr. Jones as he pulled out something that looked like some sort of brace.
“Is that an ankle brace?” I asked.
“Yeah, just in case your ankle being weak and need support.” said Mr. Jones. I nodded and grabbed the brace.
“What do I do with my boot?”
“You can keep it if you want” suggested Mr. Jones
“Okay, thank you” I said as we left.
“That was quick” said Dad.
“So now I won’t late to basketball practice” said Al. We walked back to where the elevators were.
“Let’s walk down the stairs instead” said Dad as we walked down the staircase. It didn’t take that long since we was in the second floor.
“Have a nice day!” said the lady behind the counter. We waved bye as we left the building and got into the car. I felt the vibrations of the car as it started, which made me feel tired from all my happiness. I slowly feel asleep as we rode off to the house.
“Mark,” I heard, “wake up.” I opened my eyes to see that we were at the house. “Come on,” Dad said as he got out of the car. I got out of the car and stretched my tight muscles and followed my Dad to the house.
“Where’s Al” I said half asleep.
“I dropped him off of basketball practice” said Dad. Is that why I feel like I’ve been asleep for a while? In fact, it looks darker outside than it did when I fell asleep. I closed the door behind me as we walked in to see Heather watching T.V. in the living room.
“I thought you were taking off that boot” Heather said.
“This is the last time you are going to see it on me,” I said defensively, “Look I got an ankle brace know.” I showed her the ankle brace.
“Well, are you going to wear it?” asked Heather.
“I will in a minute” I said as I walked in the kitchen. I opened the cabinet and saw my Cinnamon Toast Crunch. “Dad, can I get cereal?” I asked.
“No, eat some of the leftovers” said Dad
“Dad, the chili is not that good” said Heather.
“You know what, fine,” Dad gave up, “Don’t tell your Mother.” Heather and I might have some of our differences and she can also have an attitude, but she has my back and I watch hers. After I finished my cereal I put on my ankle brace and went outside to practice basketball. My ankle has moments where it feels good to feeling I should rest. I dribbled around, shoot the ball, tried to do cuts, and see how far I could jump for rebounds. I’m kind of rusty from not being able to practice for weeks. I came back inside the house after 15 minutes of trying to just get used to my ankle.
“How was it?” asked Heather.
“It felt different,” I said, “I feel limited to certain things.”
“Well, you also have to make sure you aren’t doing too much” said Heather.
“You right, I just got the brace” I said as I sat next to Heather and watched Blackish with her until we fell asleep.
“Hey, Mike and Heather” I heard a voice near me. I opened my eyes to see it was Mom. “You two should go back to your rooms” Mom said in a sweet voice. Heather and I got up and started to walk to our rooms.
“Good night” I said to Heather.
“Goodnight” Heather said as she went into her room.
I walked past my room and went to Al’s room to talk to him. “Hey Al” I said as I yawned.
“What you need, Mark?” asked Al.
“I wonder if you could help me with recovering my ankle and getting used to play basketball.” I said
“Of course” Al said
“Thanks” I said. I went to my room to fall asleep and thought, “I can do this.”
This weekend Mark and I have been practicing basketball against each other so I got used to my ankle, but today is the day, the basketball tryouts. I woke up on Monday with full energy and ready to go. I brushed my teeth, washed my face, got dress, and on Heather and I were awake.
Before I left to walk to school, Heather left saying, “Good luck!”
After what it seemed like the longest school day of the year, I got dressed into my basketball shorts and a t-shirt and sat at the benches in the gym. None of my friends didn’t really like basketball, so I didn’t know that much people that were trying out. I saw the coach come in the gym wearing a t-shirt and shorts on with the school colors on. A whistle around his neck and he was surprisingly buff. He was black, bald, and he had a serious look on his face.
“For those who know me, my name is Mr. Clayton and we only have time for only 1 tryout, so you must go all out today,” instructed Mr. Clayton, “Now 5 minute jog around the gym!”
First we did a warmup laps around the gym and stretched like any other sport.
“Dribbling drills!” yelled Mr. Clayton.
We had to dribble around cones, which were easy, except for the cuts to the other cones. We did this for about 15 minutes.
“Defensive Drills!” yelled Mr. Clayton.
We had to get a partner and one person dribbles and other does defense. We are still using the cones to get around and after you go all the way around the obstacles, you switch. This was a little bit difficult since I had to constantly move with my partner. This went on for 15 minutes as well.
“Shooting Drills!” yelled Mr. Clayton.
We were in two lines from the sides of the court and 1 person from each side runes to the basket and shoot a layup. This was really simple and lucky had no trouble with my ankle. This went on for only 5 minutes. Then we had to catch and shoot where Mr. Clayton passed it to you and you need to quickly be set and shoot. I kept missing these shots because it was hard to set my foot right, with my ankle limited to do certain things. We did this for 10 minutes.
“Take a break!” said Mr. Clayton.
Me and the other guys who were trying out are getting a drink and talking. “Man, I didn’t think you would keep up when you just recently recovered from your injury” said some of the boys.
“Well, me too” I said honestly
“You are not going to make the team” said 1 of the boys.
“Whatever,” I said, “Neither are you.”
“End of break!” yelled Mr. Clayton, “Now for the rest of the practice we are going to pair up and do some scrimmage.”
We all paired up with 5 people and scrimmaged with different teams. I was the in the point guard position as we scrimmaged, but our didn’t really work with each other and it made us look very bad in front of the coach.
“Okay the decision will be made in about 5 minutes, so just wait until then” said Mr. Clayton.
After 5 minutes of waiting, Mr. Clayton taped a piece of paper on the wall next to his office. I could tell there were 15 names on the piece of paper. I looked at each of the names 1 by 1 and saw that I…didn’t make it.
It went to Mr. Clayton and asked him “Why I didn’t make it?”
“It’s because I heard that you recently been recovered from an injury and I could tell it is holding you back, let it heal a little more. Also, you need to work on your fundamentals, practice it a little bit more and you make it next year.
Dad picked me up 5 minutes later. “So, Mark, did you make it?” Dad asked. I shook my head. “Oh, don’t let that get you down, you should be happy you are even able to come this far.”
“Well, I’m not going to let this make me feel down, this is just a reason for me to practice even harder.” I said. We rode back to the house and I was surprised to see Mom early from work for once. “So how did it go?” Mom asked as she walked to me.
“I didn’t make the team.” I said.
“Oh, are you ok?” asked Mom.
“I’m fine, Mom,” I said, “I’m not going to let this be something negative.”
“That’s my boy” Mom said happily.
I walked into the house to see Heather and Al in the living room watching Avengers.
“So, did you make it?” asked Al. I shook my head.
“Well, maybe next time” said Al.
“Mark, don’t worry about if you made the team or not and you just recovered so this was most likely was going to happen.” Heather said.
“Don’t worry, I will use this opportunity to get even better now in basketball and make the team in high school.” I said.
I walked to my room and sat down in my bed thinking, “I may have not made the team, but nobody can say that I didn’t try. I will get even better in basketball, but first I got to let ankle heal all the way first like Mr. Clayton said and I’ll work on my fundamentals. I will be ready next year when I go to high school. I will try to practice as often as I can and with the help of my family I can definitely do it.”