Luda’s Letters #8

Even though this season didn’t go how any of us expected, I think there is a lot we can take
away from it. As an athlete, there are always rough patches and tough seasons but it’s how you respond and react to those situations that is most important. The beauty of sports is using the low points in your career to get to the high points. I think as a team we took being in the bottom half of the league at the end of the regular season as motivation and fuel to end better than we started. We were able to use that to finish the season strong. Practices were sharper and more enjoyable, and laughter was heard more than it had been in a while. During our last 6 games, we managed to earn 13 points, nearly doubling the points we had from our entire regular season. I’m so proud of how we responded, and winning our last game handily was icing on the cake!

 Now that the 2014 season is officially over, it feels like time has flown by. I hope I take away as much as I can from this season, reflecting on what we did well as a team and what we could have done better. This year has definitely been a growing opportunity for our entire team, and I think it’s essential that we turn it into something positive and use it to spark change in the future.

When I look back on this season in a few years, I’m not going to remember the score of specific games or our final record. What I will remember, however, is the time I got to spend with my teammates and the lasting friendships I’ve built with each and every one of them. I’ll remember hanging out in the locker room, the long train and bus trips to away games, grabbing a coffee in the city, meeting up for lunch, riding home from practice, and weekend get togethers. I’m so grateful for their support and ability to make me always feel included and important even though I’m living in a foreign country. I feel so fortunate to have found this team and club a couple of years ago and I wouldn’t trade my time here for anything! I want to thank HJK for giving me the opportunity to write these letters this season. It’s been an honor and an awesome privilege to give my perspective during this season on and off the field. Also thank you to everyone reading this and I hope you will continue to support HJK Naiset in the seasons to come!