May 25, 2022
By Shalina DeLaCruz
I used to be a shy person who got nervous introducing myself and felt anxious talking to people my own age, but that all changed in August 2021 when I joined the freshman volleyball team.
Before my volleyball season started, I had very few close friends, and I was eager to step out of my comfort zone by forging new relationships. Since I only knew three girls on my team to whom I wasn’t very close, I took the opportunity to become acquainted with some people I had seen in middle school but had never talked to.
I was very nervous during my first practice because I wasn’t comfortable with the other players yet. During drills, we paired up, and something changed in me. I asked my teammate freshman Jaylene Ayala if she wanted to practice with me, and thankfully she said yes. We started passing the ball to each other as we talked and shared some laughs. The more time we spent together, the more I got to know her, and I realized that we have a lot in common.
I felt comfortable with Jaylene because she is sweet and caring. She inspired me to build up the courage to introduce myself to my other teammates as well.
After practice was over, we all went outside and talked about how we felt about volleyball and how excited we were for the season. I felt at ease in those instances.
Before my volleyball season started, I had very few close friends, and I was eager to step out of my comfort zone by forging new relationships.
As the season went on and we were all getting super close, my worries about being shy and not being social enough were gone. I was so happy, and all our fun practices made playing volleyball with them worth every minute.
Even though we are not practicing as a team right now, I still talk to almost all of the girls, and I’m glad to have them in my life. Our personalities are different, but that is what makes us get along well together.
I am much more social and confident now than I was last summer, and I couldn’t ask for better teammates and friends. They have made volleyball fun for me, and I learned a lot along the way.
I am excited for volleyball season to start up again so I can play the sport I love with an amazing group of girls. In joining the volleyball team, I most certainly stepped out of my comfort zone. I took a risk, and it definitely paid off.