Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Zone

Through intense focus you can tap into your soul's infinite powers latent within your natural state is focus.  To be 'concentrated' In this state, you can magnify your ability to impact the moment significantly.

My zone:
     Supreme confidence, knowing without a wavering doubt that every decision I make is going to be a great one.  Everything slows down to the point that nothing else matters; the score, the crowd, your opponent, nothing.  You don't try too hard, the game comes easy to you.  It's natural.  It becomes one rhythm- my rhythm.  Each dribble, each sprint up the court, exploding in to the air finishing acrobatically at the rim-this is my game, my zone.
  Just think about your favorite song.  How the sound compliments the lyrics perfectly without one overpowering the other. The packed arena with screaming fans, your opponent and teammates surround you on the court while your coaches yell to you from the sideline and the score in bright lights above you, but all of that doesn't matter because you are locked in.

     With my palms sweaty and my legs feeling energetic fatigue is not even close to being a factor.  I am so focused to the point where I feel as though I don't blink.  The defender is walking to my beat.  His presence does not matter to me at this point.  He is the chair that you use to practice with.  This isn't cockiness.  It is confidence.  It is the early mornings and late nights of pushing myself to get better every time.  That is what allows me to enter this zone.

     As soon as I get the ball I take a picture in my head of exactly where everybody is on the court.  I don't think.  I just let my body and natural instincts take over. If my body tells me to drive right, step back and shoot, then I do. If it tells me to make an in and out crossover move to the left hand and finish, then that's what I do. If I come off a screen or get a pass from a teammate that just penetrated, I am letting that shot go!  Like they say, if his hands are down MANDOWN!

     I trust my instincts because of the preparation, consistency, and mental focus I have. There is no doubt of the outcome. You have to really try to stay in the present and not let anything break your rhythm. That is when I know I am in my zone. #FightMS

What's your zone like?

 TBT Basketball tournament in Philadelphia, PA
Summer 2014

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Monday, November 3, 2014

Getting to Know Me Part 2

    As crazy as it may sound, I looked forward to fighting MS and trying to do something never done before.  I have played through numerous injuries, colds, etc., but nothing of this magnitude. I didn't feel like this was end of the road for me.

Last Day in Turkey, after 2 weeks of cortisone shots I could finally stand up and walk. 

      I knew my path was going to be different than anybody else. I think being positive and optimistic relieved a lot of stress for my family. I really believed it allowed us to continue to search and find the right doctor that would support me. After several meetings with numerous doctors and a lot of disappointment, we were fortunate enough to meet Dr. Heidi Crayton. Who not only believed that I could still be a professional athlete, but believed that I could help share my story with others to encourage and help.  I was SOLD!  She had the same passion and drive for medicine that I had for the game, it was perfect! I started taking Tysabri once a month starting in July of 2012 and it has been great for me!

     As the 2012-2013 season was approaching I worked harder than ever trying to get back to where I was before my episode in Turkey. I started off the season going to training camp with the New Orleans Hornets, even though I did not make the team I made a strong impression and proved that I could still play at a high level.  I decided to stay in the states and play in the NBDL (National Basketball Development League). I moved to Des Moines, Iowa to play for the Iowa Energy and to hopefully have a healthy, successful season. I was fighting for my basketball life.  A lot of people had written me off and said that it will be nearly impossible for me to keep playing.

     The season started in mid-November, by the 1st week in December I was considered one of the top ten prospects in the entire league.  I was flat out BALLIN!  I was averaging 17 points and 9 assists.  I was finally creating a positive buzz for myself throughout the league, it seemed almost inevitable that I would get called up to a NBA team soon, but that wasn't what had me excited the most!

Erin, Cj and I at Nationals Stadium in DC.
     The day before I left to participate in the NBDL All Star game, my son Christopher Taylor Wright Jr. was born!  This was by far the best day of my life, words cannot describe the feeling I had when I saw him for the first time. I felt so proud and honored to be a Dad!  I could not take my eyes off of him.  He was perfect.  I could not bare to leave him the next morning, we had only spent eight hours together.  I managed to peel myself away from my baby boy and I caught an early flight to Houston, Texas to play in the all star game. Two weeks later, Erin and CJ flew out to Iowa to be with me for the rest of the season.  I remember being so excited to have Erin and CJ at my game, but I didn't get a chance to play that day.   As I got dressed for my game my agent called me while I was in the locker room and told me the news.

     "Pack your bags,  you are going to Dallas.  The Mavs just called you up," he screamed in the phone.

     I was shocked!  I didn't know if I should cry or smile!  Every thing I worked for was finally coming into fruition.  The hours I spent in the gym, the pain, the frustration, it was all paying off.

     The icing on the cake was during the week I was with the Mavericks, it was also National MS awareness week!  It was NO coincidence there, only fate!!

    For me, this was the validation I needed.  My son, becoming a D-league all-star, and being called up during National MS Awareness week sealed the deal for me.  My journey was just beginning and I felt ready for the challenge.