Nordmeccanica Modena‘s Italian middle blocker Raffaella Calloni has suffered a season-ending ACL tear this week during one of the team’s practice, according to the club’s official website, and will need to undergo reconstructive surgery. This is not the first time the 34-year-old Italian national teamer, who is playing her 13th A1 season, has faced big adversity in her career. She penned an emotional letter to fans on her official Facebook page relating her many struggles throughout hey volleyball years:
I came to play in Modena because I saw the possibility of finishing my big career. I wanted to fight to win, I dreamed of finally reaching that scudetto that for 4 times I slipped between my fingers. Instead …
As time goes by, expectations are disappointed. A terrible beginning. At the second of the championship I’m injured. I try to go on the same but I am just not myself. It’s as if I have a knife planted on my knee and I can not perform as I usually do. I go on painkillers. The criticisms start; furious, bad, gratuitous. I ignore it. I keep working with my head down, training hard to fix my body and in the end, as always, I come out with my head held high!
I’m not fine, but I’m better. Enough to be able to perform at my standard. Finally I can do what I want. I’m happy, I’m having fun, I’m enjoying it. Despite the pain and fatigue, I still likeplaying volleyball a lot, I really enjoy it!
Everything is alright. I continue to train hard. A jump, an attack, a block and … crack! Again! Within a fraction of a second it’s all bad, for the umpteenth time in my career. The knee is gone. All that I had earned up to that moment disappeared in a fraction of a second. Only the pain remains, my internal dialogue, the fear of not having the strength to face everything again, of not being able to do it this time and … still pain.
A pain that is not just physical. It’s something that digs me inside, that brings me back. It reminds me every single time that something did not work. The missed opportunities, the hardships, the doors slammed in my face and the kick in the butt that you take when you are no longer useful. I pick up the phone and vent with the people I love, with my love, with my battle mates; they know exactly what I’m feeling…
And finally I calm down.
They are in pieces but everything is quickly coming back into perspective. It’s not what I wanted but I can not change it, so I can only think about what to do and how to do it in the best way. Positive rest. Because it is true that I had a lot of bad luck but it is also true that I always came back great, even when they told me “I do not know if you can go back to play”; and this time it will not be different. Do not be discouraged, I do not let the statistics decide anything for me. I decide for myself, I know what I can do and endure. And the only possible option, like all the other times, is to go back and stay well and get back in the shortest possible time.
Today begins a new path. Surely it is not what I had planned but I will still walk head-on, with so much determination and with a big smile on my face. Because, as someone wrote to me on Thursday, “life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react” and I decide to react like that … as if I always had the sun in my face.
A big hug to all and thanks for the proximity you are showing me.
VolleyMob wishes Raffaella a quick recovery and a fast return to the courts.
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GAME OVER Sono venuta a giocare a Modena perché ho visto la possibilità di finire la mia carriera in grande. Volevo combattere per vincere, sognavo di raggiungere finalmente quello scudetto che per ben 4 volte mi é scivolato fra le dita. E invece… Continua al link che trovate in bio.