“Who I Am: Ambitious, Bright, and Affectionate”

– Haley Grambo, Glacier Peak High School, WA

Haley Grambo is a freshman at Glacier Peak High School in Snohomish, WA. Since she was 6 years old, she has played soccer, softball and basketball, several of which have been for state championships. Haley also set four school records at her middle school in track and was named Female Athlete of the Year. Haley’s goal is to continue her athletic career in college. In her spare time Haley is involved in Younglife and enjoys hanging out with her friends and family.

“Growing up an athlete has conflicted with my social life and femininity. I have missed countless birthday parties, social gatherings, and opportunities to spend time with my friends. One time in particular my family was vacationing in Mexico over spring break, and I was going to miss a softball game against a rival team. As our vacation came closer to an end, I couldn’t keep myself from wanting to play. So, we cut our vacation short and flew back to rainy Washington to play another game of softball. Even though it’s upsetting to miss out on activities with my friends and family, I wouldn’t trade my sports family and teammates for the world. It’s just what us athletes do!”

Who I Am - Haley - watermarked

“Being a girl athlete is important to me, as it gives me an opportunity to prove myself on the court and the field every day. While women’s sports are constantly being degraded and underestimated, female athletes have to push through the outpour of negativity and obstacles that society forces on us. Over the summer, for example, at a high school soccer practice, our team was pushed off of the field because ‘football boys had priority.’ This opened my eyes to many situations and trials that women athletes face daily. When false assumptions are made about girls athletics, my teammates and I enjoy proving many people wrong. I am beyond proud to represent women’s sports, and to show everyone that girls can do anything that a guy can, and maybe even better.” – Haley Grambo

Being a girl athlete defies gender stereotypes and feminine expectations. The forces of our sporting culture is still pushing back in ways unknowable except to those of us who have sweated out make-up, put on a dress, and traded in cleats for heels. “Who I Am: A Girl and an Athlete” Photos Series shows the multitude of identities and the complex experiences of growing up, in our generation, both a girl and an athlete. The series will feature four high school girl athletes! Check back every Tuesday for photography by Tara Brown.

Mady Burdett‘s was published on October 27.