1. Year without equal. One of the most crucial years that marked my life permanently.

I remember as if it were today. Excited because he was studying the eleventh grade with an athletic scholarship in one of the best schools in the country at the athletic level (basketball). I felt prepared, I felt that I was finally going to get the opportunity to be part of the “Elite” team in my school and that my life depended on that moment in which the coach called one by one the names of those students who were going to be part of that team. Unfortunately, my name was not selected.

Fortunately, that year, the “secondary” team had, in my opinion, the best youth coach in the country. Méndez, as he was called, was a coach who had dedicated his life to developing the potential of those who were willing to “leave it all on the court”. And I was one of those. Although I was not the most skilled and talented, I wanted to learn and give my best, I was not prepared to be the best baller in the team.

Most of us who were part of the school’s secondary team, were those who did not manage to be part of the “Elite” team. To put it in context. Team “Elite” was nationally recognized as having the best high school players who were prospects to be chosen to have sports scholarships in universities and even to participate in the national league.

In our first practice, our coach made us very clear about the team’s status when he told us: “our team is an ordinary team. I can make you a good team. It depends on you if you want to become excellent. ” That day marked my life. I definitely wanted to be excellent, so I was willing to do what it takes to achieve that goal.

During the season, our team was going to face the “Elite” team twice. Our goal was to show that we had achieved excellence, and what better way to do it than to beat the team we could not be part of. Of the two times we face each other, we beat them twice. Yes twice. Because for us, the “secondary” team, beating the “Elite” team only once was not enough to know that we had become excellent.

From this event, I learned that being “ordinary” is necessary in the process to reach excellence. The important thing is not to remain ordinary, but to have the desire to grow and recognize where you are, to allow yourself to get where you envision yourself being.

Christian L Alvarez