Growing up, every girl has a dream of what they imagine growing up will be like. From the kind of hobbies you will have to the man you marry, a girl who dreams can create some big standards for herself.
When I was growing up, I wanted to be a cheerleader, but if you know anything about me I couldn't do that for health reasons. I was 12 and in Rec Department cheerleading when I found out about my scoliosis. The coach was my cousin and knew I wasn't going to be held back by it, so it was never an issue, even with the brace. I was just so happy to finally be a cheerleader!
Then comes age 16: the first (and only) time I tried out for cheerleading.
I made the JV squad since it was my first year and was beyond happy, however I wasn't popular and was the new fish in the sea of pom poms and hair bows. Naturally, I tried my best to smile and come out of my shell in order to fit in. I had a cousin on the squad, which made things easier as far as making friends went. I was welcome by everyone... except the captain. It wasn't anything negative about my cheering or my personality that bugged her. It was the threat of competition. It was made very apparent that she was not captain based on her cheering capability.
I know this sounds like bragging, but I am just speaking truth. All my friends and family told me that I was definitely one of the best on the squad, even the varsity coach said so.
Why is this such a big deal? Isn't this a bit juvenile for you?
Maybe... but that isn't the end of this story.
As time went on, her jealousy turned me against cheerleading and ultimately led me to quitting the squad, a decision I will regret forever.
I did try to reconnect with my inner-cheerleader during college. There were a group of girls who resurrected the Emmanuel cheerleading squad. I had befriended them at the gym, and, after some impressive dance and cheering exercises, they wanted me to join the squad. The unfortunate part was I could never be a cheerleader again. The summer the squad was to debut at camp, I would be having my spine surgery. This was a devastating blow to my mantra of not letting anything hold you back.
Reminiscing on what I wanted to be, life isn't how I expected it to be. At age 13, I wrote down a list of goals I wanted to accomplish in life. Somewhere along the line, I lost the list. To this day I don't have much to show for it. As hard as one may try, there are always limitations that will cause your goals to go unmet. The limitations can be physical, mental, or even spiritual. Whatever the limitations, one should never give up simply because a goal was unmet, or a dream ended. Limitations are not the end of the world. They are a chance to back up and start over.
Maybe now is a good time to reassess my life goals and start a new list, a more mature list. Maybe one with more depth than my 13 year old self had.