An ACL Injury With A Happy Ending

Some people might not believe the cliché phrase “everything happens for a reason,” but I do. One of my best friends is living proof.

I met my best friend, Aimee, through soccer when we were very young. She was a year ahead of me, and we were never very close until my freshman year of high school when the combination of hours of double sessions under the hot sun and the fact that I had a swimming pool attracted Aimee to my house everyday after practice. We’ve been best friends ever since. We played together on several different teams starting at age five with pee-wee, moving on to middle school, travel and premier teams, and finally high school, until October of her senior year, when Aimee tore her ACL.

It was devastating to see this happen to my best friend. Aimee lived for soccer. Her passion for the sport was obvious by her play on the field. At this time, Aimee was applying to colleges, hoping to play collegiate soccer while studying environmental science. Those plans changed once the doctor informed Aimee of the news she was hoping wouldn’t be true; with a torn ACL she was out for the rest of her senior season and it would take a year for a full recovery.

We’d help Aimee carry her books when she returned to school with crutches, and help her decorate them to try to keep her spirits up. When any misfortune like this happens it’s hard not to think: why did this have to happen? Soon enough, we found out.

Aimee began physical therapy soon after her surgery. She was always so happy to go, and who wouldn’t be? Physical therapy was the way to walking with two legs again. But Aimee was always a little too excited about it. She’d come back from her therapy telling us how much she loved it and how interesting it was. We’d nod our heads and pretend to be fully engaged in her ranting about the body and how it works. Once she was back on two feet, Aimee made a very important decision: after having personally experienced the process of rehabilitation and learning so much about human physiology, she knew environmental science wasn’t for her. Aimee wanted to be a physical therapist. She is now a sophomore at Ithaca College, enrolled in a six-year physical therapy program where she will have her doctorates degree upon graduation.

Had Aimee not torn her ACL, who knows if she’d still be headed down this path? Although it is usually hard to foretell at the time, I truly believe that there’s a reason for everything.

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Here’s me and Aimee.

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3 Responses to An ACL Injury With A Happy Ending

  1. tunesquad says:

    That’s awesome that she has found something she is passioante for. Sometimes the best things in life come in weird packages. It’s actually such a coincidence because one of my friends from home tore her ACL in her senior season of lacrosse and is still partially in the recovery process. Like Aimee, she realized she really loves physical therapy and is now very interested in following that potential path at Vanderbilt where she is now a freshman. Maybe physical therapy is where its at.

  2. Fearless Leader ugogal says:

    And Aimee will probably be great with young athletes who come to see her!

  3. snowcts14 snowcts14 says:

    I had chronic knee and ankle injuries throughout high school, and so was in the trainers office pretty much everyday. I have to agree with Aimee that physical therapy, although painful at times, was a blast. Like her, I enjoyed hearing about what exactly was happening with my muscles and ligaments, and what happens to them in the healing process.

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