Locked In

Written by Katie Silvestri

Katie Playing Softball
Katie Silvestri, up to bat for EOU
Picture: Samantha Flett

My EOU softball games were postponed two weeks, and my mom was flying in the next day, all while I was in the middle of student teaching a class of kindergartners. Someone covered my class while I called my mom to let her know the unexpected news. Immediately, I was scrambling to know how this would further affect my family and me. That night I found out a Career Fair I was supposed to attend the next morning was cancelled, which meant no practice interviews and contacts with possible school districts. Along with this dismal news, came an order from Governor Kate Brown that all K-12 schools would be closed from March 16 till April 1.

Everything I had on my calendar for the next two weeks had been cancelled within a day. I called my parents immediately after school on Friday, March 13, and discussed possibilities of leaving for home. A week and a half to two week spring break was my immediate thought. I have never experienced a spring break away from softball before, so my parents were going to use every second of it to spend time with me. I booked a flight to Los Angeles Airport (LAX) and headed for Boise an hour later. My boyfriend’s brother let me crash on his couch to be able to make my 8am flight on Saturday, March 14. While crossing fingers that the airlines would let me fly, we took off and landed in record time. Next thing I knew I was in the car with my mom, dad, and younger sister headed for Palos Verdes.

Four days later, my senior season came to an end. I no longer play softball. I will not be able to competitively play the sport again. A dark cloud hung over my head when the news came in and my heart sunk. My mom hugged me though; she knew there was nothing that could console me after my athletic career was ripped from my hands without me having done anything wrong. In her arms, I could not picture what my next months would look like.

March 17, one day later, Kate Brown shut down K-12 schools until April 28. I am a student teacher at EOU in the Undergraduate Elementary Education Program and an EOU softball player. Both of these were taken away from me in the matter of a few days. Flexibility has been my best skill during this time and for all those that are struggling. Though I could not have foreseen my senior year of college ending like this, I can look to the positives. I will still be able to graduate and get my teaching license, all while being with my loved ones at home.

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