Mental health struggles in students at McNary

By: Alexis Eldridge
January 14, 2022

McNary is filled with talented student-athletes, with their major success with their sport. But we rarely hear about their busy daily routines, and the challenges they face daily. 

Kayla Toavs, a Junior here at McNary is currently enrolled in two AP classes along with Chemistry and Pre Calc, as well as being involved on a travel volleyball team for her club. 

¨My daily routine is mainly school and volleyball. During the week I am at school all day then three out of five days a week I have volleyball practice for two hours. My weekends are usually spent studying or I have tournaments,¨ Toavs said. 

Being a student-athlete can have its perks but each athlete has their struggles and Toavs' main struggles are maintaining good grades and her mental health. 

¨Taking a heavy load of classes causes me a lot of stress especially when there is added pressure to get good grades. I have very little time between school and volleyball, so it's hard for me to focus on my mental health,¨ Toavs said.

While trying to manage time between school and sports it is extremely easy to get overwhelmed and completely fall off track of what’s important. 

¨When I get overwhelmed I step back from what I am doing and listen to music. This helps me regain my focus and puts my mind at peace,¨ Toavs said 

Madison Morse is another student-athlete here at McNary. She is a Junior who is enrolled in one AP class and is also involved on a team for softball. 

Morse is juggling between  school, work, and softball through her busy routine.  

¨After school I either have work, tournament practice, or high school practice. If I don't have any of these I try to take as much time to myself as I can,¨ Morse said. 

Morse also struggles with battling her busy schedule along with keeping up  with her mental health during her busy days.

¨The most challenging part of being a student-athlete is maintaining my mental health. When I get down on myself it's hard to do anything right,¨ Morse said. 

While Toavs listens to music to cope with her overwhelmed mind, Morse has a different strategy that helps her. 

¨When I get overwhelmed I really start to struggle so I like to go to my friends to help ease my mind, so I am able to reset and refocus,¨ Morse said.

Being a student-athlete will have its challenges and perks, but when you get stuck in a funk it is important to reach out to others because they are most likely in the same boat as you.