Updated: Aug 8, 2019
Many of you who are reading this probably know me as a volleyball player. Odds are that if you’re reading this you have played with me, against me or seen me play at one time or another. If by some chance you don’t fall into one of those three categories, you at least know that I play volleyball (shocker). The sport of volleyball has been an incredibly large part of my life for a very long time. Through this sport I have met some truly remarkable people and have had some unbelievable life experiences. It is safe to say that much of my identity has been and may always be very much linked to this sport.
For those of you who may not know me, welcome. To catch you up to speed my name is Sarah Lagler-Clark and I am from Mississauga, ON, Canada. I played division one volleyball at the University of Georgia. I recently graduated from UGA Summa Cum Laude with a degree in Psychology. And that’s it. That’s all you need to know. Okay maybe not ALL you need to know but in all fairness that’s how a lot of people know me. “You’re the one who went to Georgia”, “Oh you play volleyball here”, “The volleyball girl”. For better or for worse that’s who I was to people, and maybe even who I still am. If I’m being completely honest, I LOVED being that girl (maybe even still kind of do). And yes, I still am that girl. I did go to the University of Georgia. I did play volleyball there. I do have a degree in Psychology and yes I even got to wear the pretty little tassel signifying Summa Cum Laude on graduation day. The facts are undoubtedly correct, but these are the facts that I have chosen to share with the world. This is the picture that I have carefully crafted for all to see.
My goal for this blog is not to share this version of myself. That is what my Instagram is for. If you would like to see the refined and edited and handcrafted me, here’s my handle: sarahlaglerclark. That is the “happy”, “smart”, “accomplished” Sarah. No, here on this blog I wish to share a more real version of myself, a more relatable version. You see as nice as Presidential Scholar and Division 1 athlete sound these things have little impact. As I sit here almost 6 months out of college, those accomplishments may look good on my resume but they are surely not the ones that have defined me. When I think about the person I am versus the person that the world has seen I know that there is a disconnect. I am undoubtedly proud of the accomplishments I have shared with the world, but I sit here knowing there are other accomplishments that I have chosen not to share up until this point.
So now I would like to share a different narrative, one that is far less glamorous. I would like to share my struggle with anxiety and depression. My struggles and little victories with my own mental health are the things that have truly defined me and made me into the person I am today. It is evident that volleyball has been a big part of my life and a place where a lot of my identity and self worth were vested in. I now wish to pursue my new passion, mental health but without leaving the entirety of my old identity behind. I wanted to find a way to blend the two. So I thought what better way than to start a blog where I could recount my experiences with mental health through the lens of being a female athlete.
We are all silently fighting many of the same battles within our own minds
Mental health has always held a place very close to my heart as it is something that I myself have struggled with since I was 10. My struggle with anxiety and depression used to be something that I was extremely ashamed of and I wanted to hide from anyone and everyone. As years went by I was able to accept it and become proud of my struggles and victories. Now mental health is something that I become more and more passionate about every day. I want nothing more than to help others like me that struggle with mental health. I think whether we realize it or not we are all silently fighting many of the same battles within our own minds. My goal here is to air out some of those battles. I want to get the conversation going. I want people to realize that they are not alone in this. The older I get and the more experience I gain with mental health, the more I realize that many people can relate to what I’ve gone through and what I will continue to go through. That’s my goal here. To allow people to relate. So if you’re a female athlete, at any level or have a daughter who’s an athlete check back in from time to time because odds are you’ll be able to relate to some of my coming posts. So without further ado let’s get relatable and let’s get the conversation going.