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Word Count: 507
He gazed up at me with the clear bright eyes of a child who was clearly experiencing a rare moment of happiness and I knew instantly the sacrifice had been worth it The sacrifice I am speaking of was awaking at five oclock on a gloomy Saturday morning to take poverty-stricken children in our area shopping at a local department store before it opened I cant help but to notice life is full of these little decisions I have longed been plagued by the eternal question of whether to deny myself for the hope future gain or to enjoy the lesser fruits of the present Of course most people when asked will respond saying the right decision is to deny temporary pleasure for a greater later gain but this is far easier to say than to put into practice The story of the little boy resonates so deeply within me because its an example of a large gain from a minimal act of self-denial Unfortunately the light at the end of the tunnel can seem oh so far off when one lies in the midst of a trying situation In the case of my soccer team state champions 2003-2004 season we all are driven by an inbred love of the sport and a natural camaraderie that comes only from However the very seams of our affection for the game are tested during the two a day practices in the scorching early August heat This very test of human resolve is especially tough on high school boys because these practices require the player to give up of the precious last month of summer In exchange for this month one receives a 6 am wake up time for morning practices and a coach-imposed curfew Five hours later that day the actually soccer practice commences in what tends to be eighty to ninety degree heat The undeniable results of these two a days are a six-pack and
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