Hello Acting Manitou!
In case you don’t know me I’m Jane. I was a CIT stage manager last summer. For my blog post I wanted to share a story and the lessons that I have learned from it.
Those of you who know me know that I play field hockey and softball. Those of you that heard my first session crying fire speech know that I would do anything for my teammates. I’m going to focus on field hockey because my season ended just 2 short months ago.
But the story really starts my sophomore year when I made the varsity team. That year, we won 4 games and lost 12. Nobody enjoyed that season. We had terrible captains and the tension on the team was palpable because the seniors were insular and didn’t want to welcome the new varsity players. Our season ended when we lost in the quarterfinals of the state tournament by 8 goals, which is embarrassing no matter how you look at it. It felt especially embarrassing to me because I am the goalie. For the next season, I promised myself that I would do anything in my power to make our team better.
The next year we won 8 and lost 8. To you reading this, you may see that as an improvement but all I can remember is that we could have won more. Our captains were unmotivated and it led the team to be similarly unmotivated. We again lost in the quarterfinals but this time only by 1 goal. At the conclusion of that (my junior) season, I made myself a different promise. I vowed that I would not allow us to lose in the quarterfinals again. I wanted that to be my legacy as a graduating senior.
Going into this season (my senior year), I was selected to be a captain. I was on a mission to be better than we had been before and to win that game. I wanted to make the most of every second. From the first day of preseason, my co-captains and I worked to set an example for what a team should look like. Our team felt a momentary lapse when we lost to our rivals on our opening game of the season but throughout the next few weeks, we had glorious double overtime wins and close games against teams that my school has not beaten in 10 years. We also came back and beat those same rivals. For 3 months, we did everything as a team and I loved every second of it. For the first time in years, the team was happy and excited about each game. We won together, lost together, laughed together, and danced together (yes, I danced in front of the whole school and yes it was ridiculous). We even got some attention as teachers and other students began to come to our games.
Going into the state tournament, Our record was 12 wins and 4 loses. This was a huge improvement from my first varsity season. We were unfortunately given a lower seeding than I had hoped, meaning that we were playing our rivals at their field. Even so, everyone on the team felt confident in our ability to win.
The day of the game, I was excited. I was ready to lead my team to something more than we’d had. The game was close. Regular time ended with a score of 2-2. During the first round of overtime, I made a stupid mistake and left an open spot in the goal and our rivals capitalized. However, one of my teammates (Shoutout to Emily) scored soon after. At the end of single overtime, the score was tied 3-3. Between the two overtime periods, I realized that this could be my last field hockey game. All season, I had been avoiding the thought that at some point, it would be over. There wouldn't be another season. In double overtime, neither team scored. Triple overtime in field hockey is shootouts, in which one offensive player gets the ball and 10 seconds to score on the goalie. It is stressful. I had been practicing shootouts with my teammates for whole season because I had a feeling it would happen at some point.
My teammates couldn’t score and I couldn’t make the saves so we lost. In that moment I felt I had lost everything that I had been working towards. My field hockey career was not just over but I had not fulfilled my vow. I was devastated and I felt like a failure. As seniors we are told to have a legacy and I had just lost mine. Everyone kept saying my co-captains and I had led the team to a better record and that was enough but all I could respond with was that we lost and nobody will remember our record. Those of you who know me also know that I always have a plan, and this was a major wrench in my plan for senior year.
This is the part where I offer some advice. It has taken me almost two months to understand what my real legacy is. My legacy sadly is not a glorious state or league title. It’s in the relationships that I made. It’s the example that my co-captains and I set. When I look at the team I’m leaving behind, I see capable leaders who will lead the team to more than I ever could. My legacy is not something tangible. I won’t really know what my legacy looks like until my team takes the field next season.
This experience has taught me that my legacy doesn’t have to be something that everyone can see. So long as I’ve done something that helps one person, my legacy is complete.
My advice to you is that your legacy doesn’t need to be something that others can see. You don’t need to be remembered by everyone. The only people that need to remember you are those that you have a relationship with. Your legacy will be carried by those you’ve cared about.
I don’t know what my legacy at Acting Manitou will be because my time there is (hopefully) far from over.
P.S. None of this was possible without my teammates (Grace, Phoebe, Mariska, Zappi, Lily, Phoebe, Sophie, Sophie, Ebie, Dylan, Sophie, Maddie, Elizabeth, Gracie, Hannah, Emily, Hannah, Lauryn, Valerie, Lola, Alex, Dana, Eloise, Daphne, Maddy) or my coaches (Coachie T, Michelle)