This is the finished first draft of my PS. Both schools I'm applying to allow the length. Please critique.
© Copywright: C. Goforth 2010
Growing up I knew two things and I knew them well. The first being books and the second being softball fields. I cannot recall many situations growing up in which I fit in. As a little girl, I was bigger than all of the other girls, and often teased for being so. So I chose cleats, baseball gloves, and dirt instead of ballet shoes, tutus, and beauty pageants. Instead of “mommy’s little princess,” I decided to be “daddy’s little slugger.” Instead of playing dolls with a little sister, I helped take care of my little brother who had Down Syndrome, and often I was out practicing with my dad. When I wasn’t practicing, I was reading. I found many friends inside those books. I always fit in a baseball glove and no one in the books ever judged me. I always thought that I could hide in these two places, but I soon realized that there would be a time where I couldn’t hide and would be forced to find a way to fit in.
Obviously not the first, but one of the most important times in my life that I realized that I did not fit in was, of course, the first day of high school. Instead of attending the local public high school, I was lucky enough to be accepted into one of the best private high schools in Houston; a young women’s “college preparatory.” On that first morning, my parents and I were so excited that I had been accepted to such a school, we all piled into our ’95 Chevy truck and we drove the hour it took, fighting traffic from the southeast side of Houston, all the way to my new school. I first began to feel uneasy when I saw Mercedes, Lexus, BMWs in the drop off line with us. Once we got to the door, I got out of the truck, waved at my family and slammed the heavy door shut. Once I stepped my Adidas sneakers, bought on sale, onto the pavement, I knew I didn’t belong. My mother had even sprung for a L. L. Bean backpack so that I wouldn’t be so “out of place,” but it didn’t matter. As soon as I walked through those double doors, I saw Louis Vuitton, Coach, Tiffany’s, French manicures, pearls, and makeup. I knew then that this Hispanic girl with the frizzy brown hair and the most expensive accessory she had on were the braces on her teeth, would quickly need to figure out how to survive this unfamiliar world.
I could not find comfort in my books and doing well in school. Everyone here was not only beautiful and wealthy, but also intelligent. I needed another plan. That plan included softball. I had been playing softball since I was four and pitching since I was seven. I had always worked hard, practiced hard, and I was motivated. I knew that softball could help me find my place in my high school. If I planned to try out for varsity, I would play fall ball with the girls from the high school, in addition to my new hefty academic workload, while continuing to play for my tournament softball team. Needles to say, softball and school were going to be my life. I did and found my way onto the varsity softball team as a freshman.
Fast forward to the end of my junior year, our softball team made it to State and we got into the championship. To my disappointment, my coach had not chosen me as the starting pitcher for the championship game. I am a competitor and a leader. I did not like sitting the bench but I decided to be prepared if I needed to go in and I would support my team from the dugout. Mid-game, I got to go in because the other team had started hitting and scored a few runs. We still had not managed to put a single run on the scoreboard. Between my pitching and our defense, we were able to hold them every inning and I started the hitting rally that put us in the lead. I will always remember my last pitch of the game, not because it was the last, but because like me, it didn’t fit in.
Typically a pitcher on his or her game can simply throw it by the batter. However, I chose to go with my favorite pitch, a change-up. It is different and slower that the other pitches and to an unsuspecting batter, it is nearly impossible to hit. That pitch won the game for us and we became the State champions that year. Something my school had not done in the three years prior to that. I had finally found my place in my new world of Coach, Tiffany’s and BMWs. I learned that my talent, my ability to pitch, the thing that made me different from all of the other girls growing up, gave me the tools I needed to be seen as one in a million instead of one of millions.
I went on to receive an academic and an athletic scholarship to college. Now I have graduated from college and graduate school and I no longer play softball, but I will always carry the lessons I learned with me into every aspect of my life. Now that I’m in the “working world,” I still find times that I do not fit in. Instead of running to my comfort zones, I have learned to meet these challenges head on. There is a quote that I have carried with me since the days of my childhood from one of my favorite authors, Dr. Seuss, “today you are you, that is truer than true. There is no one alive that is youer than you.” If it weren’t for those books and all of those softball fields, I would not be the person I am today, which I thankfully find to be a very unique individual.
© Copywright: C.Goforth 2010