Doubt is a silent killer, slowly creeping into the mind to overpower dreams and ambitions.
Before you know it, doubt can leave you waking up every day thinking about what might have been.
I thought I was pretty good about being confident in my decisions, never looking back and wishing I had chosen a different path.
That was until I met some people about a month ago who changed my mind, and essentially my life.
I was lucky enough to spend 32 days in London, England, this summer. It helped me realize who I am and who I want to be. It also showed me of what I am capable.
Most of all, though, the friends I made there have encouraged and inspired me to pursue my dreams. I want to use my first column this year to say thank you to Ky, J. and Belle (not real names).
These friends cast out any doubts I had about myself or my capabilities, and to this day they push me to follow my heart.
I’ve only ever valued two things highly in my life. Sports have always been first in everything I do. My grandma sometimes jokes that when I was born, I had a baseball in my hand.
The only other thing I have ever found solace in was writing, but it could never quite compare to the exhilaration of sporting events.
As I have gotten older and started preparing for my career, my focus has shifted. Every ounce of me wants to put baseball first, but reality constantly slaps me in the face and tells me no. The real world whispers in my ear that I’m not good enough, that I need a real job.
Or is that the depths of my own mind being overcome by doubt?
I don’t want to find out. My friend Belle has all but convinced me of that. She told me it is better to fail than to never try. As much as I hate failure, I would rather know I didn’t make it than wonder every day if I could have had a different life, a life surrounding what I love most of all.
Since then, I have considered trying out for a travel team when I have time. Is it realistic to expect to make it to the majors, or even the minors? Probably not. I know I will not be the best in the league, but that does not mean I can’t be good.
If I never try, the only thing I will ever be good at is fighting that little devil in my head that says I had a chance but chose not to take it.
Ky and J. were there for me in similar ways. I’ve worked in many facets of journalism in order to become well-rounded. However, I often doubt myself and my work.
Within hours of meeting each other, though, Ky and J. had me believing I was ahead of the pack. They supported me in more ways than I had ever known.
Never once did they doubt me, and they made me wonder why I ever doubted myself.
Right now, I’m exactly where I want to be. I’m the Sports Editor of The Murray State News, and I’ve worked hard and paid my dues to get here.
I owe that one to my dad. We’ve been through some pretty rough times, but he helped mold me into the man I am today. He pushed me and made me find my own way. We have had some intense fights, even as recently as last week, but I appreciate everything he has done for me. I would not be writing this column today if it was not for him.
So I have no regrets.
In my columns this year, I’m going to use these lessons to give the readers a unique view into Murray State athletics. More than that, though, I’m going to make sure I never lose sight of my dreams and hold tight to what I value most. I hope I can make at least one of you do the same.
I can thank Ky, J. and Belle for that my new direction in life.
Story by Ryan Richardson, Sports Editor