With heart pumping, I gripped my racket tightly.  Feeling the trickle of sweat on my forehead, I hastily wiped it with the back of my hand. Concentrating on my opponent in front of me as he tossed the ball high in the air.  Anticipating the serve to be precise and more to my backhand, I slowly inched back at the baseline.  Well aware that my opponent is one of the best player in the club, I told myself there should be no room for mistakes.  As we both pound the ball as hard as we could, we tried our best outwitting each other. The game ended with the opponent winning 8-6 over me yet, I don’t mind losing because the sport never fails to give me an exhilarating feeling.  The game that lasted almost an hour has given me the break I needed from all the pressures and tension at work and home.

Melancholic in nature, I find myself dwelling with negative thoughts and doubts all the time.  Never satisfied with my self,  I am my worst critic.  Challenges in life can pull me down as I struggle with my role as a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a businesswoman and a writer.  Over the years, I have tried to change some of the melancholic attributes by trying to be more positive in my outlook in life.  Learning to let go of things beyond my control and stop trying to achieve perfectionism are some of the successful changes I did over the years.  Yet despite it all, there is still a negative attitude in myself that I cannot control.

Recent events in life has caused me to drift near the brink of depression.  The feeling of being lost has been surfacing my every waking moment.  Even the words that fill my mind are that of a loser who has lost the fight of her life.  I simply cannot go on in this state of frustration.  Finally, I had to literally drag myself to my most favorite place–the tennis courts.  From afar, my friends called out and told me to get ready for a game of doubles.  With the friendly banter always present among my tennis buddies, a smile and an occasional laugh would escape me.  Not long afterwards, I came out of my depressed self and anticipated the feeling of excitement as I got ready for a game of tennis.

I have been a tennis player for almost 17 years and it never fails to lift me out of my negative stupor.  When life treats me bad, tennis is and will always be my means of relaxation, an escape from pain and a source of the clearing of the mind and heart.

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