I started this blog in December with the intention of using it to clear my head. It was a way for me to figure out exactly what I was feeling. And when I found out my ACL was fully torn, the blog kept me hopeful. It gave me a place to write about an optimistic future in gymnastics.
This was far from my first injury. And because of my history, people had seen me as that (crazy) girl who never stopped, never gave up. It didn’t matter what injury was thrown my way—I kept fighting. I kept coming back.
So the blog became a place to track just another comeback. I thought, “How cool would it be, if in 6… 8… 12 months, I’d have videos and blogs marking each step of the way, as I started doing gymnastics again?” Then one future day, I would post a video of myself, wearing Aggie Blue and Gold, proudly competing for my team in the UCD Pavilion. That wasn’t just my goal—it was my plan.
But time passed. And things changed. The winter and spring quarters were harder than I thought they would be. Gymnastics wasn’t exactly living up to expectations I had created. Sure, Conference Championships was a lot of fun—but I was still on the sidelines. And I was starting to get discouraged. Not to mention, my body has been through a lot. I could only ignore pains for so long, and I couldn’t ignore the risks anymore.
Now that I am home, I’ve thought about things. I’ve thought about my position on the team next year, and I’ve had a chance to experience a little bit of a life without gymnastics. But no matter the scenario, I can’t come up with an outcome that would ever be worth getting hurt again.
Eventually everyone’s got to walk away, but honestly in December, I didn’t think that I would be walking away now. After everything I fought through, I didn’t think it would end with such a disappointing injury, having felt so close to actually competing.
However, that doesn’t mean this is the wrong decision. Actually, I’m more confident than ever before, that this is the time to retire. Gymnastics was my whole world; sometimes it’s scary when things change so dramatically. But I feel like right now, I have so much potential in a life outside of gymnastics. And because of that, I know this is the right decision.
I think I’ll always kind of be “The Comeback Kid.” Things will never be easy, but I’ll never stop fighting. This time, my “comeback” will just take me somewhere new.