Around The Yard: Megan Galbreath

Returning to for a third season, "Around The Yard: Life As A Harvard Student-Athlete" explores life away from the playing fields for select Harvard student-athletes through their own first-person narrativeFor a full list of blog entries, click here.

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Megan Galbreath
October 13, 2016

Happy Fall Y’all!

My name is Megan Galbreath, and I am a member of the Harvard Women’s Diving Team. As a native Floridian, the only seasons that I have ever experienced are rainy season and dry season. Getting to experience fall on Harvard’s campus has been so exciting. The leaves are starting to change, the weather is getting cooler, and Halloween is coming! 

This past week has brought more than just my first fall; it’s brought my first college midterm, my first scrimmage, my first lazy Sunday night, and my first apple picking adventure. It’s also brought me closer to my new family here at Harvard, made up of peers that are so kind and can always put a smile on my face. What started off as a hectic, yet typical, week turned into one of the most memorable times that I think I will have during my freshman year. With two papers and one midterm due by Wednesday, I was definitely feeling the stress that is oh-so-common to Harvard students. As motivation, I just kept telling myself that once I got through Wednesday, I would be home free. I had my first Harvard swimming and diving scrimmage to look forward to, followed by a long weekend filled with friends, fun, and family. Luckily, with a little bit of sleep deprivation (and lots of coffee!), I made it through my midterm on Wednesday without a problem. 

Before coming to Harvard, I never realized that I could find a group of friends that was so close that it felt like family. There’s no word that I could use to describe my Harvard swimming and diving team, other than family. It was an incredible feeling to stand on deck and compete against Georgia Tech with 30 girls that I knew had my back and wanted to see me succeed. Even though it was just a pre-season scrimmage, the energy at that meet was something that I had never before experienced in a competition setting, and it made me realize just how lucky I am to be a member of this team.

Not only am I lucky enough to have 30 incredible girls supporting me, but I am also lucky enough to have found a close-knit family within the freshmen on the swimming and diving team. My first lazy Sunday night could not have come at a better time. Sunday was one of those cold, drizzly days that made me miss the hot Florida sun. However, Sunday night was one of those nights that makes you wish for rainy days. My freshmen HSD family and I ordered pizza, baked brownies, and hung out in the common room of Wigglesworth, making the most of the dreary weather; while it may not seem like much, it was the much-needed end to a crazy and exciting week.

With Columbus Day, though, my week wasn’t quite over! I went apple picking for the first time ever with the diving team, and I am already looking forward to going next year. Good music, when combined with the most gorgeous day since I have been at Harvard, friends, and apple trees definitely makes for an experience that I recommend every Harvard student have at least once during their time here. We took candid photos, frolicked through the trees, and gorged ourselves on apples, hot cider, and apple donuts until my cheeks hurt from smiling and laughing so much. To top it all off, I ended the night at my roommate’s house, where her wonderful family made me the delicious home-cooked meal that I had been craving for months.

Life as a student-athlete is very hard. I’m not going to sugar coat it. At the same time, I think that it is one of the most rewarding things that you can do on campus. Every day my teammates push me to be better than the day before in both the pool and the weight room. Every day I am surrounded by people that love me as if they have known me my entire life. Every day I laugh and learn, study and smile. Every day I miss my home and my family, but every day I am reminded that Harvard is my new home, and my team and roommate are my new family. I honestly couldn’t imagine myself anywhere else. Here’s to the start of fall, and the rest of a terrific semester!