October 29, 2012
I attended the University of North Carolina. At first I was a homesick kid that didn’t see its beauty and comfort right away. During my first semester I spent the long days going to class, playing soccer and shedding some tears. It was a rough first semester but I made it through and won a National championship and passed my classes. To me it was a success. I told my parents I didn’t want to go back and they just said well finish off the year and we’ll make a decision after the 2nd semester. Well, I’m glad to say I finished my first year at North Carolina and then graduated in 1993.
These memories are so fresh in my mind because I recently got back from a trip to UNC. Yes, when I go back to North Carolina now there are no tears or long days. It is a little slice of heaven down there and I have a warm comforting feeling when I return. Each year, my friend and former teammate, Mia Hamm has her celebrity Golf Tournament down there. She raises money for her foundation. Mia’s foundation focuses on “providing support for two important causes: raising funds and awareness for families needing marrow or cord blood transplants and continuing the growth in opportunities for young women in sports.” She has help impact many people’s lives and I am just glad to help support her wonderful cause.
Mia and I met when we were just kids. She was 15 and I was 16. We both got called up to the National Team in 1987. We joined the team as young kids and grew up to be strong woman. We shared so many great moments on the field, winning Gold Medals in 1996 & 2004 and winning the World Cup in 1991 &1999, but what I am so grateful for is the “fight” we all had and the friendships I made. The game of soccer has taught me much more than just putting a ball in the back of the net. It has taught me teamwork, compassion, fight, heartbreak, joy and love. Because of this great game I have become a role model and hopefully have had a positive impact on people’s lives. Mia and I may have made huge impacts on the field but we have and still do make bigger impacts off the field. Give of yourself when you can and make an impact on young persons life, today!