By John Tveter, Sports Writer

American novelist Bill Vaughn once said, “It’s never safe to be nostalgic about something until you’re absolutely certain there’s no chance of it coming back.”

This past weekend, my career as a competitive athlete came to an end. Now I know it is officially over, I can’t help but feel sentimental about my time as a basketball player. I will always remember what took place in these past four years as an athlete, and I can’t help but smile.

My four years of basketball at Pacific Lutheran University were a bit like a roller coaster ride. The journey had its ups and its downs, but the ride was exciting. I wouldn’t trade the past four years for anything.

When the final buzzer sounded, the feeling that immediately came to my mind was bittersweet. My body is physically ready for a break. It will be great to take time off and let the aches and pains caused by a long season to finally heal.

But it will be strange not to be preparing for next season. When one season came to an end over the course of these last four years, it was time to begin training for the next one.

It is an odd sensation knowing the sport you have committed so much time and effort toward is now complete. I do look forward to having spare time and can now pursue my other interests.

I thought I was coming to PLU to play basketball. Little did I know that by playing basketball here, I would make friendships that will last a lifetime.

It took time, but I came to understand the most important thing wasn’t the games. It was the relationships I formed with my teammates and the memories I had with them.

I will forever have a special bond with Kai Hoyt and Arvid Isaksen, the two other seniors with whom I spent four years.  PLU men’s basketball coach Steve Dickerson says it all the time: “There are few things more special than being a teammate.”

That is what I will miss the most — the feeling of being a part of something greater than myself.

One of the strangest sensations that occurred after the final game of the season was the feeling of taking off the PLU jersey for the final time. Although I will likely play other games in the future, I will never again play a game in which I represent my school.

I will never forget the lessons I learned as a member of the PLU men’s basketball team. I will always remember that it’s important to learn what it takes to be successful not just in sports, but also in life.

As one chapter of my life ends, a new one begins. After all, the journey of a thousand miles begins and ends with a single step.

Share your thoughts