Overcoming a life change

Please tell us something about yourself, your experiences, or activities that you believe would reflect positively on your ability to succeed at Penn State. This is your opportunity to tell us something about yourself that is not already reflected in your application or academic records. We suggest a limit of 500 words or fewer.

All it took were fourteen words to obliterate twelve years of passion. It had all been taken from me.

As I sat in the cold hard chair across from the neurologist's desk, I heard her voice, but I didn't want to. Her words were a blur, as if my ears had given up with the shock that had overcome me. "In concern for your health, I advise that you do not play lacrosse anymore." I felt my skin flush in panic, and my brain just give up on processing the conversation. I felt as if I had been pulled from the room and was watching, helpless, from outside of my own body. I was speechless and unable to react, and I simply sat in silence.

I had been playing lacrosse since before I learned arithmetic. For my fourth birthday, my brother gave me my first lacrosse stick, and from that day on, I was addicted. I got increasingly involved as I got older until lacrosse became my entire life and defined who I was. Growing up, I aspired to play varsity lacrosse, but I never got the chance. In a JV game, I made hard contact with an opposing player, putting my body on the line to stop a goal from being scored. This had been my job as a defenseman since I was six years old. But this hit wasn't like the others. I recognized the instant and intense pain...

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