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I felt it pop, and pain engulfed my shoulder like ants cover an anthill that has been stirred with a stick. It made me angry, but it didn't help things to get mad. There was nothing I could do but try to recover in time to start over. Giving up wasn't an option.
My junior year in high school, I went out for basketball. I liked it for a while, but when games started I was on JV. It was okay, but I was only getting to play two minutes per game. This didn't make me very happy. With all the time that I was putting in to play, it just wasn't worth it. My dad told me to just stick it out. Some of my friends told me that I should just switch to wrestling. I didn't know if this was possible, so I talked to the coach. The coach said he would be glad to have me on the team, but I would have to talk to the counselor. I talked to him and explained why I wanted to switch sports and he gave me the go ahead. There was only one thing standing in my way: how was I going to persuade my parents to let me wrestle. I talked to my dad about it and he said that if that was really what I wanted to do then that would be fine. I decided that I would play one more game of basketball and if things didn't get better, I would switch. Things didn't get better. I went in once for two minutes.
I got my weight certified and started wrestling over Christmas break. My first practice was horrible. The head gear straps made my head raw and I got my butt kicked. I didn't know anything compared to the other guys in the 135 weight group. I learned a lot from them, though, and as time progressed, I got better and could actually wrestle with them. I found that there were some moves that wouldn't work on me, because my shoulders were very flexible. It was great, because some kids were afraid that they were tearing up my shoulders, so, they wouldn't use some of the techniques that they regularly would have. Finally, I had enough practices to wrestle in a meet. I was nervous, because it was my very first meet, and it was a varsity meet that our JV was going to.
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I made weight easily, and soon enough, it was time for my first match. As I walked out on the mat and put the ankle band on, everything was like slow motion, which soon changed. When the whistle blew, we started circling each other, still in slow motion; then, he shot in, and I sprawled to counter and got the first point. From then on, it was fast motion running on instinct. In the end, I got pinned. The next match went good, and I pinned my guy. After this match, I was a little tired, but okay. During my third match, I was doing fine until he tried to run a switch, and I felt my shoulder tear. I don't remember if it audibly popped, but I had a shooting pain in my shoulder. Ouch! It probably wasn't the word that came to mind, but I'm not going to say what did. The pain started increasing as the adrenaline wore off. I didn't want to see a doctor about it, but the pain was so bad, I finally went to the doctor. They x-rayed my shoulder, but none of the bones were broken, and everything was in place. The doctor started moving my arm; then, he stuck his thumb behind the ball in my shoulder which was extremely painful. He then popped my shoulder out and back in like there was nothing holding it in, which he did to both shoulders. He said that I had loose ligaments in my joints, and that the only thing I could do was build the muscle around the shoulder to hold it in place.
I started lifting when the pain died down. I felt stupid using the five pound dumbbells and struggling with them. Just that little weight felt like it was setting my shoulder on fire. It seemed like people were always hitting my shoulder. It was probably no more than normal but it was more noticeable with the pain.
After lifting for a while, I started practicing again and was ready to wrestle in the second-to-last JV tournament. I made weight three pounds under, and then sat and ate my "delicious" power bar. I went to sleep on the bleachers until it was time to get dressed and start warming up. We ran a little, and then started rolling around on the mat to stretch out everything. My shoulder felt fine, but I was a little nervous. As the time for my match drew near, I started reviewing moves I had learned in my head to prepare myself mentally for the match. When the time came, I checked in and put my ankle band on. Coach gave me a little pep talk before I stepped onto the mat, and I was ready. I stepped on the line, shook the opponents hand, and the match started. From the beginning, I felt like I was in control. Everything was going my way until he went to run the same switch and POP! Everyone saw it happen. Coach was out on the mat the instant he saw it go, but when I moved it, it popped back into place. After the match, I had people come up to me and say they saw it dislocate, then they would say, "It was the weirdest thing, one second your shoulder was clearly dislocated, then you moved and it popped back into place."
Since the injury I haven't been able to do some things that I had done before, such as team roping and other roping activities. Now my shoulders don't hurt as often but I play football, which probably hasn't helped it much but I didn't hear the POP! while playing.