When I was in 4th grade I was in a tense floor hockey game in gym class. Yes, we’re talking about floor hockey. In gym class. (Cue the Allen Iverson incredulous stink face.)
In the last game of the 4th-grade gym class floor hockey season, my team was down by 2 goals with under 2-minutes remaining on the clock.
With 1 minute and 45 seconds to go in the game, I scored a goal on a slap shot from 30 feet out. Suddenly, my team was down by just 1 point. And in my head, I started singing ‘Bring out your best, Budweiser Light…’ which was a popular ad campaign jingle from my youth. (Good job appealing to the 10-year olds Budweiser!)
Then, with just 30 seconds left in the game, I assisted on a goal to tie the game up.
We then rotated positions and I played goalie for the final 30 seconds. Suddenly, the DJ in my head faded down the Budweiser jingle and pushed play on Eye Of The Tiger.
With under 10 seconds left in the game, I stopped a shot on goal from one of the 5 Ryans in my class. With a MacGyver-like awareness of the ticking clock, I instantly gathered the puck and shot it from my own goal, across the entire gym floor, past all the defenders, and into the opposing goal to win the game. And I lost my little 4th-grade mind.
Over the next 13 years of my athletic career, I participated in 2 high school state final four football games, 4 high school state track meets, 2 New England high school track championships, 3 Big 10 Conference track and field championships and several track meets with 30,000 to 40,000 spectators. But to this day, that floor hockey game, with that ending, and my role in it, remains one of my favorite and most confidence-inspiring memories of my entire life.
It is never too late. There is always a chance. Keep believing. Keep going. Keep trying. Find the soundtrack in your head that ignites you. And believe in miracles. I do. Because I feel like I have helped make them happen. And you can too.
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