Dealing with Loss

“The ties that bind us are sometimes impossible to explain. They connect us even after it seems like the ties should be broken. Some bonds defy distance and time and logic; because some ties are simply... meant to be."  - Meredith Grey, Grey’s Anatomy

In sports, loss is guaranteed. It’s talked about mostly in the form of losing a game or competition, but loss comes in different forms. It can come in the form of losing your sport from unexpected circumstances, from your body losing the ability to do your sport, and even from losing a teammate or coach. I feel like all of these types of loss are unacknowledged in the sports world, and yet have the most impact on the mental health of athletes, or really anyone involved.

I’ve unfortunately lost two coaches during my time in gymnastics, and I know many of my other high school friends in sports have lost a coach or teammate as well. I also know that athletes who have lost these important people in their lives, have lost many to suicide. The pressures put on athletes, coaches, and anyone involved in sports is extremely high, and no one notices these things until it’s too late. Mental health resources need to be made more available to all athletes and coaches, and more importantly, destigmatized. It’s okay to need to go ask for help. It shouldn’t be normalized for you to suppress whatever you’re feeling, whether you’re suffering from these immense pressures, or dealing with the consequences of loss.

For me, recently, I’ve still been struggling with the loss of one of my coaches, especially since it came at a time when I had just lost my sport. Writing was always the way for me to let out whatever emo