April 13, 2016
Dear Tim Howard,
What an inspiration you are! You are one of the best soccer goalkeepers in the world, and you are a wonderful role model. Everton is an awesome team, which my dad and I love. I am a soccer goalkeeper as well. I read your biography and learned so many things about you, such as obstacles you had to overcome.
I found it very moving that you told your story of overcoming Turret’s Syndrome (TS), and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) by playing soccer! What does TS feel like? I always wondered about that. Thank goodness you spoke out about these disorders and sought help. I think managing your OCD with a pre-game ritual of rubbing the grass on the field is very cool. I also have a pregame ritual. I hit the goal post to make sure I can save a shot if I jump up. I also find the arc and make a scratch in the middle of the goal to make sure I can save more shots on goal.
In your 1997 yearbook, you wrote, “It will take a nation of millions to hold me back.” You were right about that! I can see that nothing is going to stop you, and you are just going to power through any challenges that come your way. I hope to follow in your footsteps by becoming one of the greatest goalkeepers ever!
Madison Bove is a sixth grader at Central Middle School, Anne Arundel County.