-Bryleigh McKeithan- Have you ever felt like an outsider? I come from a military family, so I have moved around and had to make new friends in new places. I have felt like an outsider a lot! When I came to Louisiana, I was called “the new girl” and “girl from Tennessee”. It made me feel like I didn’t have a place in my school, where everyone had been friends since practically birth.
When I made the archery team, I felt like I finally belonged somewhere.
With the help of archery, I started to meet people, not only at my school but in my community, and I quickly started to feel less alone. I practiced every day. My parents entered me in tournaments and encouraged me to put myself out there, win or lose. I worked really hard to get better at archery and people started to notice my name on the leaderboard and say “hey” at school and at tournaments. I started to get invited to participate in tournaments outside of school. It even helped me get to this point, right now, writing for NASP® as a student contributor, which never would have happened if I hadn’t tried out for archery.
The thing is, if you want something bad enough, you will put in the effort to get it. If you’re having a hard time finding your place, maybe you have to step outside of your comfort zone, try something new, and prove yourself. It may be hard, but it will be worth it. I didn’t know anything about archery or NASP® before I moved to my new school, and now I have an entire organization, teammates, and coaches that support me and consider me a friend. NASP® archery helped me find a place in a new community and a hidden talent for a new sport!