September 23, 2020

September 2020 Update From Deutschland

It's hard to write these days.

In August, I averaged sixty-five hours per week working the preseason for my new volleyball team and job. Loved it, but, of course, that is not sustainable, nor necessary!


September rolled around, and with the start of school, we did not have double day trainings anymore. What a relief! There has still been an extra amount of workload due to finishing all season preparations, managing corona regulations, and adding another team to the mix, but, all in all, I can definitely affirm that I am in the right place doing the things I have been trained to do my entire life.

Granted: I do have to do most of it in German! 

But another reason, besides a very real lack of time, that it's difficult to bring myself to type out what's in my brain is because I don't really know what's in my brain right now.

Do any of us?!

We are all scrambling around, literally trying to survive in a pandemic with no honest end in sight, and here we are, pretending like everything is quasi-normal and playing volleyball.

We had our first match in the Germany 2nd division on Sunday. It felt familiar, but it also felt weird. Kind of like running into someone you used to know before they experienced a traumatic life event. You know what to say and do, but there is this hesitation of caution before every moment.

With infections rising globally, it has seemed like the collective human response at this point has been that the economy (also known as money) carries more value than any single human being.

Tell it like it's real.

THIS SUCKS.

Yeah, I got to keep my job and work through the pandemic. I know I am one of the lucky ones. I also know that if and when anyone in our league or club tests positive for CoVid-19, nearly all of those sixty-five hour work weeks for preparation I put in will go down the drain.

We are our own cautionary tale, and we just keep showing up each day, writing the next page of the story and hoping we will just be allowed to write on the next page the next day.

During the quarantine/lockdown phase of CoVid-19 in Germany (approximately mid-March through May), I thought and wrote about many things.

I really believed that having sport and "regular life" unexpectedly ripped away from us would generate a newfound appreciation and level of gratitude for experiencing anything resembling "normal" again.

Oh, how quickly we forget! How quickly we take these gifts of jobs, hobbies, studies, going to a restaurant, hanging out with friends, and traveling for granted!

Aside from the obvious time spent with my husband, I have literally counted on one hand how many times I have had a real hug since March. I don't consider myself a person who needs physical affection at all, but I just want to hug my friends. My teammates. My players.

I have kept it together. I have had to. I have teenagers and pro players and kids and friends and family members who need emotional stability from someone. That someone is me. 

I have always maintained a sense of urgency and a kind of desperation to the way I have lived my life since I was a teenager. I can see some people watching me and clearly thinking how overly dramatic or obsessively passionate or just plain weird I am.

And maybe I really am all of those things.

But I know one thing is for sure. I care. I care SO MUCH it hurts. I care that people are experiencing true and horrible suffering physically, emotionally, and financially all over the world. I care that these kids who are having to live through this era are getting worn down day by day. I care that we as humans are being exposed for our lack of decency and poor priorities.

I care so much that I hate it when I see people who don't care.

If I would have stayed in America, I would have become a lawyer or a politician. I would have cared too much to just sit around and let the bad guys keep winning.

I don't know why God chose my path to be much more fun and cute with volleyball, but that is where He has put me, so I will care here. I will care about keeping my players safe. I will care about creating authentic volleyball experiences for my players. I will care about doing the right thing.

Because when this is ever all said and done, I want to be able to say that I did the best I could for the people placed in my life at this time. 

Whoever is in your "circle of exposure" these months: take care about these people. They are in your life right now for a reason, and you are in theirs. Make it count.

I look forward to hugging you soon.

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