Picture this…I was a Freshman in college, just back from the most amazing experience in my life at a place I have loved and felt at home at. I had just finished a Summer College Program at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida. I worked as a lifeguard at Blizzard Beach and during that summer we also had business classes delivered to us by Disney University. I had wanted to work at Walt Disney World since I was 10 years old when I wrote a letter to Disney to ask for a job. I received a letter weeks later from Disney saying that when I was old enough to come back and get a job. I used that letter to get this college program internship position. I was flying high when I got home and excited about the opportunity that had present itself. Moving down to Florida and getting an advanced internship in Disney Casting. I was ready to change my life for my dream.
I applied and made it through the whole process, just waiting for the call that I had gotten my dream job. I had finished my last semester at the UW and lined up an apartment in preparation for moving to Orlando. I remember the day vividly when I received the call. I was in my upstairs apartment that was more like an attic with carpet. I answered the phone with an excitement, talking with my recruiter Kristi Breen. I was going to live my DREAM. Then with six words, “I am sorry to tell you…” my life at that time seemed to fall apart. She told me I was perfect for the spot, yet they choose someone else. I had no idea what to do. This has still been one of the failures that haunts me. Yet, what I did was continue to move forward. I move to Florida and got 3 jobs, including one at Disney, and started living my new life. This was one of my critical moments in life that helped shape my mental strength for the future. I learned that even if your dreams don’t come true, they are still valid and valuable to you and your life.
Another aspect of my life that focused my hand to create mental strength was playing basketball in high school for my dad who was the head coach. It was one of the greatest experiences of my life to have my dad as my coach and would not give back a single moment. Although just a great moment also come with challenges. These were both physical and mental in nature, from physically getting hit during practices to the constant pressure to succeed since most people thought I was only in the position on the team because of my dad. (Which was not true since I was All Conference twice and Honorable All State) Yet it all came done to the love my family gave me regardless of performance and to me being comfortable and confident with who and what I was.
Mental strength in my life, has been my rock. It is the only way for me throughout my life to explain why or not explain why and just move forward.