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There are four public tennis courts down the street from my house.

For nearly three years, I've walked or driven past them daily, wistfully thinking, I really want to play tennis.

Every time, I've shut it down:  no time, no money, no teacher.

Poor me — I can't have what I want.

Last summer, I attempted to live out my dream through my 12 year-old daughter. “This is your dream, not mine.”, she gently reproached.

Poor, self-pitying, me.

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Three weeks ago, my friend Margaret's 17 yr-old, tennis-playing niece, Alison, arrived in town for the summer — ready to work.

I could take lessons —

Near my house.
On my schedule.
At a reasonable price.
With friends.

Would I pick up the ball?

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To be fair, my giving permission the slip is understandable:

How I could I possibly do something for fun?
I might actually have fun.
Which would be about me.
My femininity may be called into question.
And I would be “naughty.”

But, there's an even bigger risk when we play the victim: we jeopardize our sense of self.

I did finally make a decision, and here's a hint:

When I hear ‘thwack' signalling that I've hit the ball in the sweet spot of the racquet, I squeal.
It's inaudible.
Sometimes.

***

Is there something that you are longing to do — just for fun?
How will putting fun in play help your loved ones ace their lives?
When was the last time you squealed with delight?

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