Monday, October 08, 2007

Re-Cap of First Post-Surgical Match

Last Friday night I played in my first post-surgical soccer match, a game against fellow board members and soccer coaches in our association. As I had written before, I was quite apprehensive yet excited to try out the knee. Now for the actual results...

I'm sore. Yep. That's it in a nutshell. While I thought I had been exercising (running and weight lifting), my knee is still a long way off of full recovery. Now, to give a little perspective, both of the legs are sore. No surprise though. I hadn't gone full skills in 9 months so of course my legs are going to complain.

The game went well though. I was on the losing team. Losing, not even by a little margin. But I handled ourselves quite well. The other team had some ringers, one of which was amazing to watch.

As I played the game I felt completely outmatched/outclassed. I felt as though my abilities were so far under the mark that it was almost shameful to be on the same field as some of these athletes.

Despite my feelings of inadequacy, I did contribute to the team, setting up nice attempts on goal and great, controlled passing. I also put a few moves on players and had a few defensive plays.

When I asked my wife after the game how I played, I thoroughly expected the pep talk answers that good wives give their husbands, especially to those that know they are recuperating or have completely lost it. But as my beautiful wife pointed out, she doesn't sugar coat and never has. She said that I played well. She said I was as fast, if not faster, than most of the players out there.

I really didn't feel I deserved that kind of accolades until I recalled one players admission that he would have taken the ball straight into goal were it not for the fear that I was fast approaching him and would have overtaken him. Another player after the game during a discussion of playing indoor asked me if I had played 3 levels above where I actually had played (I'll take it as a compliment).

Maybe I didn't play all that bad? Maybe I can play indoor in a few weeks and actually compete.

Either way, I realize that I've got a long way to go but I feel more confident that in time I can get there. Easy steps. Line upon line!
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