Sport is filled with highs and lows. Senior Field Hockey player, Amanda Crampton, can testify to this reality.
Finishing up her Junior year at ESU, Crampton had just been named the captain for the 2018 season, was an All-PSAC 3rd Team Player at defense, started all 22 games, and had seen substantial time on the field across all her three years so far.
The 2018 season and her last year within her collegiate career held high hopes for Crampton. But things didn’t go as planned.
During the summer of 2018, Crampton journeyed to Italy with other Division II field hockey athletes for an international competition.
It was in the first game that everything suddenly changed.
“We were in the first 15 minutes of the game. I was running whilst defending a girl” Crampton said, “next thing, I felt my knee dislocate and I fell to the ground.”
After going to the hospital and receiving nothing but her knee wrapped in gauze, Crampton made the decision to stay on in Italy and finish out the remaining eight days.
“I had a small piece of hope inside me that my injury wasn’t as bad as it seemed. That’s what kept me positive and in high spirits for the rest of the trip.” However, on return home, the doctor told her she had torn her Medial Patellofemoral Ligament (MPFL) as well as had some serious cartilage damage – surgery was a definite.
The reality of this meant that Crampton’s dream senior season was no longer.
After surgery, Crampton thought she was in the clear to start focusing on rehab and what the future had in store for her; however, she was wrong.
“Two days after surgery, I passed out in the bathroom. My parents found me but I awoke to major calf pain and I couldn’t breathe so they called nine-one-one. Scans showed that I had two blood clots in my lungs and four in my right calf, which meant that I had a high risk of having a stroke.”
The surgery was so intense that she had to use crutches full-time
On top of all this, Crampton spoke on how the blood clots left a deep fear within her and her family.
“If they hadn’t found them when they had, I would’ve had a stroke and had the risk of dying or permanent injury somehow.”
Slowly, over-time, Crampton started to bear weight and bend her knee.
Rehabilitation began, however, Crampton said, “it got more and more frustrating as I wasn’t able to do simple exercises that I used to do without thinking.”
Then ESU’s Field Hockey pre-season began.
“I constantly felt beaten down and frustrated watching everyone else play. Everything I had put behind me about not being able to participate in my senior season resurfaced and the reality that I couldn’t play the sport I love for the team I love finally hit home.”
It’s been approximately five months since Crampton’s surgery.
“I ran for the first time since surgery the other day which was fantastic.”
When asked about her senior field hockey season and how that is going, Crampton said, “I am still helping out on the team in whatever ways I can. I miss playing a lot; I loved being able to put on the uniform, and have fun on the field but I realized that sport is not everything and no one should ever let a sport define their life,” said Crampton.
“Every moment you get to do whatever your passion is, at any moment your entire life can change, so you need to take every single day, every play as if it’s the last moment you get to do it and enjoy it,” continued Crampton.”
“I try to relay that onto our team. My collegiate career ended a lot sooner than I expected and it still hurts to think about it sometimes but I don’t want others to feel this way,” said Cramton.
“I want them to cherish every moment and not let themselves get caught up in all the drama and extra things and then when it ends, miss it,” said Crampton.
As an athletic training major, she is hoping to gain an internship with a team or continue onto to graduate school for sports medicine or kinesiology.
“I want to be able to take what happened to me and apply it to all my athletes in the future that get hurt,” said Crampton.
“I would love to do a women’s league when I am fully recovered,” said Crampton.
This injury has affected Crampton’s entire semester and changed her life, but she won’t let it define her.
“I had to figure out life again. It helped me realize what matters and made me focus on the bigger picture,” said Crampton.
“If I could tell someone who just got injured I would say, ‘no matter how long or how hard it is, it will always get better.’ Someone told me that at the beginning of this journey and I didn’t believe them. But now, I know it’s true.”
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