One of the women on my tournament team is leaving soon. She is going to have a baby, which is so wonderful for her, but it is hard to let her go. Lily was pretty good. Besides, I always hate losing teammates. Partially because I get used to people and how they play but also because it always makes me nervous when we have to get someone new. My stomach has been in knots since we posted the tryouts message. It is not easy for me to bring someone else into the team. There are always all these questions that come with trying to find a replacement: Are they going to accept me? Will there be issues? Are they going to be the kind of player we are looking for but not want to join the team because of me? Are the rest of my team going to ask me to pretend to be something I am not in order to recruit someone good who might have a problem with playing with someone who is LGBT? OK, that last one is a little far-fetched but once my mind starts going, it is hard to reign it back in. These are very real fears for many LBTQ athletes, unfortunately.

It is entirely possible that I am blowing it out of proportion. It could be completely fine. Since I’ve come out to my team, we’ve only had to replace one other player. She was totally fine with everything and that was awesome.There has always been that nagging feeling about it, though. My mind tells me that it could have been luck.I would like to think that I am wrong and that wasn’t luck. That is was a genuinely appropriate response that I should expect every single time. I am a good basketball player. I am a veteran on this team. I am a good person. That should be more than enough for anyone trying to come in to play with us. She should accept me as I am. I don’t know, if I were joining an already established team, here are the two things I would be looking for: 1) are these the types of people who can win on the court? and 2) Are they people that I would be OK with traveling with and spending time in close quarters with? Isn’t that pretty much all that should matter in a situation like this?

I guess because we occasionally have someone on an opposing team that will name call or give me or my girlfriend a hard time when she comes with us to games.It makes me put my guard up a bit more and I have a hard time letting people in. I hate feeling like that. I don’t like to think the worst about people. I would much rather believe that people are good and accepting, and that has been mostly the case–in my experience, at least.

Well, our first tryout is tomorrow. Wish us luck finding someone good to replace Lily!