After the last debate round ended, we walked out the room and waited for the judges to decide on who won the final debate tournament. It was around 8 p.m, and I was so tired and was nervous about the results because I knew that the last round didn’t go that well. I was talking with my coach and partner about how we performed and noted some things we could improve on. After that the judges called us back inside so they can give us the final results. They also gave us advice on what we should improve, saying the pros and cons and after that, they told us that we won. I was excited, but at the same time in shock, because I wasn’t expecting that.
In December of 2019, at the final debate tournament, I was so stressed and uncomfortable that I could barely deal with it. I used to have a partner on my debate team but he was never able to study the case with our group and he didn’t study by himself either. Because of this, I had to rule out the option of having a partner.
Every time I compete I get nervous, that was one of the reasons why I told my coach I wanted a partner, so I can feel more confident and control my nerves. The fact that I didn’t have anyone to support me was the worst but I think if I was by myself I could have done better. Also, the other competitors were strong and every time I heard them arguing I thought “they are going to kill us,” but everything ended up well.
When the day of the tournament came, I thought it was going to be an amazing day. I went with everything prepared and counted that my partner did the same thing, like he was supposed to, but it was all the opposite. It started as a really difficult and stressful day because we needed to win multiple rounds before moving on to the finals. I was dealing with everything I had to debate, plus what my partner had to say too because he never studied the case so he was lost. I was doing my best for both of us without any other support and our opponents were giving good arguments on the case. My hands were sweaty, my stomach was fluttering and when I’m like that I can’t do things well, and don’t like performing poorly when I know that I can do it better.
It was one of the most difficult days in my life, but it was funny at the same time. It was so hard to control all my feelings that day that it even gave me a headache. I was so disappointed because I went in confident that I would perform well, even if I didn’t win. Instead, I lost all my hopes of winning because I was dealing with a lot of things at the same time and became stressed and frustrated. Yes, the tournament didn’t start how I expected, but it ended up how I planned, and that was the most exciting part of the day. No matter how hard the process was, I never gave up.
Now I’m a whole different person because of this experience. I’m more confident, and I trust myself more. When I’m going to do difficult things I pray and put everything in a positive light and tell myself I can do this. Every effort has its rewards, don’t worry about the struggles that you have been through because at the end of the day you will see the results of all your hard work just work.