After I moved home from school, I began playing back with my traveling select team. We'd win the Missouri State Cup and travel to Regionals (Michigan, Minnesota, Illinois, Ohio...) year after year to compete with the areas best. Back in my hometown, I joined a local club that houses both competitive (woman's league) and non-competitive (coed league) teams. I played both, at the same time. Other than a few concussions here and there, some nasty blisters and rolled ankles, I hadn't been sidelined since college.
That lasted maybe six years, until a gorgeous spring night in April of 2007 when I collided hard-core with my own keeper. Apparently, he never saw me defending the opposite team's player and came out of his box to attack the ball, all the while ripping my left leg in half. Or at least that how it felt! That collision landed me in the emergency room, with nothing but a pain pill. So I called my sister to get her orthopedic surgeon's number to dissect exactly what had happened. I suffered a Triad Tear. Awesome. Tore my ACL, MCL, and Meniscus. (My sister too suffered a torn ACL just six months prior--and would you believe her surgeon told her that statistically, if she had any siblings that, too, played ball, they now had a 25% higher chance of suffering the same injury) Might have been helpful had she told me this prior to my accident. :) I guess we proved that stat to be true!! Did people/parents ask me to quit playing? To save my body, for, I'm only 26? Yes! Did I consider retiring? Ever? Nope. So three months of rehab, surgery, and another four months of rehab and I'm back on the pitch.
Been about two years now of consistent playing and nothing has seriously caused me to miss the action. My favorite time of soccer season....Tournament time!! It has now arrived and I am unable to to participate due to the bun in my oven. I will say it's a different felling being sidelined for pregnancy, than being sidelined due to injury. One is so damn obvious...hello cast, braces, crutches, limping, etc. And the other, right now, is just fact. No other factors, no big belly, no pain, just the fact that I know I can't get out there and risk any sort of injury to belly or body at this time.
The comforting and exciting thing I am looking forward to, though, is having my husband, or parent's bringing my child to my games. I love the idea that I will still be playing as a parent. Probably coaching again, (which is another caveat of my soccer career), and sharing the indescribable joy of the game with my family.
So, this weekend, while my favorite of the 3 major indoor tournaments in St. Louis is in full force as I speak, I sit back, cheer on my sister and count down the months until I am back! Look Out!!
Here are a few soccer injury photos of myself and one of my sister....and Yes!!! The game is worth the pain!!
A Rolled Ankle
Some nasty blisters...but we won!!