What a year... I would love to bring you all up to date, but I am not really sure where to start. I'll give it a try!
To start, I have to go back in time. Two and a half years ago, I had to say goodbye to my passion and sports, because of my disability. I had not done a lot for quite a while and actually
got a little depressed, but while scrolling through Facebook I found it... Wheelchairtennis Spijkenisse. I was reading it and saw my chance (or a possibility). It was time to try something else
and so it happened. In no time, I had my first lesson in wheelchairtennis and to be honest, this was quite the failure haha! I had been working myself to pieces for one and a half hours and all I
got from it were blisters, net balls, muscle pains and failing seemed to be my destiny. I was very relieved to hit some balls standing at the end of the training, because that made me feel like
me again, even though i pretty much failed doing that as well. I found myself not being at such a high level of tennis as I used to be, after not doing anything for 2.5 years.
Coming home after, I swore I would never do this again... So one week later, there I was, in a wheelchair on the court. That was obviously not what I meant when I said I did not want to do this
anymore. But after some (a lot!) pushing from the parents, I promised to try again. To my surprise, it actually went quite well and I even had some fun doing it. Sit down, because this mind souns
like a shock... After training, I said: "See you next week!". Not just you, me and my parents were surprised... I heard that everyone was caught by surprise, after me saying that.
You could say, the rest is history... But I am going to tell you some more, if you like it or not. Here comes a short summary of the last year: 2016! What an amazing year and it has not even
finished yet... Wow!
March this year, we (the adults) were ready to play our first wheelchairtennis tournament ever in Meppel. What a succes! Three days later we went home, with more than one price, even two
first places, which included mine in the B-Draw Women Single. Secretely I was very proud of myself haha.
Only one month later, I discovered that my muscles were not yet used to the intensity in which they were being used now. During the tournament in Badhoevedorp that month, it came to my mind that
I might had taken the wrong decision to play. I only won one match, so lets just forget this one...
There was some time for rest, before playing the next tournament. I needed some time to graduate and so the next one was at the end of May. Valkenswaard was where we had to travel this time and
is also where I played my first women doubles. Despite enrolling the tournament at a higher lever than supposed and not being able to perform the way I wanted, it was a good tournament. I came
home runner up in both singles and doubles... Thinking back, I am quite content with what I achieved those days, as you can probably imagine!
The next tournament was in Echt. Again I chose to play two categories... The weather the first day was absolutely amazing, with temperatures rising to thirty degrees Celsius (in my
opinion a little too high though). First single match won and the next day we also won the doubles. The weather decided to throw a spanner in the works. It started raining cats and dogs and
temperatures dropped. I noticed that my body was not too pleased with this turn of events, but I had to play the semi finals. Unfortunately I lost this match... But we won the doubles, so
good enough for me!
Let me think... We went to Leusden in August. July was a month full of resting and enjoying my holiday, which I very much deserved (Yes, I say so myself)! A nice tournament to play and the one
where I achieved my second first place in singles. I played in doubels as well, but this time mixed with a male trainingpartner and we became runner up. We kind of got our asses kicked in
the finale hahaha... (At that time, I did not found that very funny).
Next on the list, was the next-to-last tournament. I forgot to mention earlier, that we were still participating with most of the adults from the club. I got a phonecall from the organisation: Do
you want to play B-Draw or Main Draw... I took my chances and decided to play Main Draw, with the thoughts in my head: "How cool would it be if I won a game or even more than one!" To my
surprise, I actually won one match en so I did not end last in the poule. I can assure you, that after this tournament I did not have any problems with my confidence. I also participated in the
mixed doubles with an other partner, and after quite a thriller of a match, we lost and ended as runner up. :(
Time for the last tournament of the year. It did not turn out the way I wanted it to... Zoetermeer, the weather was amazing. I participated in the women singles Second Draw and in the women
doubles Main Draw. De doubles were all lost, but I was able to perform the way I wanted to and we won so many games, we could not have wished for on before hand. (I am still proud when I think of
this tournament!) Again no problems with my confidence.
Unfortunately there was a down side to this tournament. I got injured in my shoulder during the doubles and I still had to play two single matches. During the first match, I could not play the
way I wanted to and was not able to oppose and so I lost. The second match I decided to give a walk-over and not play...
This was not really the ending I wanted for a year like this, at least that is what I thought. After some weeks of rest, I started private training with Marc Kalkman. He is an amazing trainer!
There is more good news, ranked 13th of the Netherlands, I was able to sign up for the Dutch Championships... Next year, I have some great things planned, in which I am probably going to
participate in eight international tournaments and some Dutch tournaments. The perspective is nice and cool and amazing and wonderfull... you get it!
Who would have thought that I would be here, one year ago, when I had to be pushed to even go to my training. I can tell you, that I did not expect this. But I am very grateful that my
parents and the club pushed me to keep trying and all their support. They helped me to find my passion again!
This was last year, a little longer than expected. But then again, a lot happened.
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