Just before my basketball game starts, I make note of everything I've learned since starting this sport. I think about jumping, dribbling, passing, shooting, everything. Everything that I've learned is about to be inputted into this game. My skill will be tested against everyone else that is on the court.
I look at the other team. There is a tall guy, most likely the one who will jump for the ball for possession first. A short guy, most likely the point guard. While he is warming up with the ball, he looks strong with his dribbling. The ref looks bored, but ready to start the game. He calls the captains over and talks to them about the values of sportsmanship and how only captains can talk to the refs, typical things discussed before a game.
I see the ball in the ref's hands, smell the freshly cleaned gym floor, hear the crowd's anxious murmurs. I'm excited to play and will try my hardest, like I do with every game I play in. My coach tells me that I will be jumping for possession at the start of the game. I love to start in games. The crowd is cheering you on, people are looking at you, and you are the center of attention for that split second.
As a team, we walk out onto the court as does the other team. While walking out, I look for my parents in the crowd. I see them, and we make eye contact. I give them an excited smile and they return it with a nervous grin. (They are nervous about me getting hurt) I walk to the center of the court and the other guy who is jumping for the ball does, too. We shake hands and get in the proper positions to jump. The ref walks up to us and blows his whistle. He holds the ball in front of us and tosses it up in the air. The game starts with the ball in our point guard's hands.