In case this is your first time reading my slices, here is my focus for the challenge: my fifth graders and I are participating in the Slice of Life Challenge this month, and they're writing memoirs. I thought I'd do the same kind of writing - memory writing - throughout the challenge. I'm going to be writing around photographs and memorabilia.
As much as I loved being a country girl, taking care of my animals, and participating in 4-H, I also LOVED soccer! Organized school sports were fairly new for girls in the 1970s. Title IX was barely in existence. I think we were the first girls' team in our community to go to a soccer tournament. I played defense and even won team defensive player of the year once. I enjoyed the competition, practices, and games. My parents were always there to support me - my mom driving me to practices and my dad helping me in the back yard to perfect my skills. I loved that it was just the right balance of fun and skill, camaraderie and competition. My coaches were supportive and encouraging, and we were all just out to do our best and have a good time.
I'm not sure what made me turn to cheerleading in jr. high - nothing against any former or current cheerleaders that may be reading this right now, but it never fit me, and by the time I figured that out, it seemed too late to play high school soccer. I'm not sure high school sports would have suited me either - I ended up participating in theater and show choir, which I loved. I sure enjoyed soccer when I did play, though, and it will always be a fond memory. It helped build confidence and strength, and gave me athletic skills that serve me in adulthood. I'm thankful that girls today can do anything they want - I was on the cusp of that movement and am grateful!