Dreams Torie Welsh

Starting at age four, my parents signed me up for lessons in various activities, as most parents do. Dance was the first thing I tried and by far my least favorite. Soccer was a close second on my childhood list of things I hated. At the age of five I picked up my first tennis racquet. By the age of eight, my parents kindly allowed me to quit all other athletic pursuits. Tennis was the only thing that I enjoyed.

I lived for competing and dreamed of following in my older sisters' footsteps of playing on the high school tennis team. As a nine-year-old, high school tennis seemed to be the ultimate. I realized that to be able to compete at any higher or professional level I would have had to dedicate a lot more time at a younger age in such a pursuit so, for that reason, I kept my dreams attainable. I knew I wouldn't be the next Serena Williams.
At the age of 14, my dream came true. I made the varsity high school tennis team, as a freshman. That year I won the region tournament and took 3rd place in state. Life could not get any better.
As the glory days faded, my dreams changed to that of witnessing greatness. I've ventured to a handful of professional tennis tournaments where I sit it complete awe of their talent. My last visit to the US Open, a few years ago, brought me to tears as I entered the Billie Jean King Tennis Center. That is a place where dreams come true, not only for the players.
I dabble in local tournaments now and then just to keep up on my skills and to feed my passion for the game. My newest dream, although it may sound silly, is to get to a point in my life where I have the flexibility to be a high school girl's tennis coach and help girls achieve their dreams, just like I did.

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