Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Ignore the Noise

I’ve never really liked country music.

Partly because my dad calls it noise, and partly because my mom is too gung-ho on Rick Springfield to appreciate a genre without innumerable key changes.

I vividly remember driving down I-35 South in rural Oklahoma. Every single station on the radio was country. Forced to keep it on because I can’t stand the quiet, there, in my Ford Focus, for the first time, I heard the sweet, sultry voice of Keith Urban.

And everything changed.

Last week I was in Nashville. It was a Sunday like any other Sunday. The Kornets were all together, the Kornets went to church, and the Kornets were late.

It was probably John's fault.

As soon as we tiptoed our way through the back doors and the whole congregation was aware of it, I looked up, and realized we weren’t the only ones who were late.

It was Nicole Kidman. Nicole and her two little girls came walking towards us and nestled into the pew directly in front of me.

I know I was supposed to be paying attention, and I usually do (I promise), but I couldn’t help but study her every move.

Five minutes later Nicole’s husband, Keith Urban, walked in.

My heart stopped. I didn’t mean for it to. I was listening to the priest I swear.

But those blow-dried, silky smooth, fluffy golden locks seemed to flutter with his every step.

“Wow, he must balayage” John whispered under his breath.

There wasn’t enough room in the pew for the whole family to fit. As Keith looked around for an open seat I almost jumped in the air and lassoed him towards me.

Unfortunately, a woman’s diaper bag lay propped up on the seat besides me, and Keith was forced to look elsewhere. There went my chance of holding his hand during the Our Father.

I tell you all about my infatuation with Keith & Nicole for a reason—

I’m struggling.

I’m struggling with the obsession for fame.

My whole life I’ve always been the best.

I got an unassisted triple play in tee-ball.

I scored 20 in an 8th grade girls’ basketball game, when I was in fifth grade.

I never lost a game in basketball, volleyball, or softball all three years of middle school.

Sure, everyone can appear humble. But on the inside, I knew I was good. And I never wanted anyone to be better. That’s why I shot for hours on end in the driveway. That's why I set up makeshift cones in the street and ran suicides every night after school. That's why I was always the last one to come inside because I wouldn't go inside before my brothers. I wasn't going to lose. I wanted to be the best in the world.

Which is why right now, at 24, I’m struggling.

Without sports, what can I do well?

Without throwing a football, fielding a grounder, splashing a triple, what am I good for?

What can I wow others with?

I’ve been thinking about it a lot lately. It has eaten me up on the inside.

It’s been awhile since I’ve written my last personal blog. Initially I wrote one all about Luke. All about his first game. It was one of the best days. But after the buzz wore off, after the reality of it all set, after he fit in— it hit me.

I’m jealous.

I’m not jealous of him being in the NBA.

And I’m not jealous of his success.

I’m jealous of the noise.

I have always thought I was going to be the next NBA player in the family.

Yes, I’m a girl and yes, I was 12, but without a doubt in my mind I was going to be the next Calvin Cambridge.

Everyone was going to talk about me. They always have. So why would it stop?

My little brother got good. That’s why.

Despite the debate, men who play basketball are always going to get a liiiiiiiittle more attention than women who play basketball.

Basketball has always been my vehicle. My gateway to success. Without it I feel inadequate. Like everything else I do will never be as good as the athlete I once was. And the worst part is... I don't even miss playing.

Sure, I love the game, but what I really wanted was the fame.

Ever since I was a little girl I grew up idolizing those who embraced the spotlight. Allen Iverson and Barry Bonds were my favorite athletes for Pete’s sake. What 8-year-old girl forces their mother to take her to Kinko’s so she could laminate Barry’s articles after he broke the home run record with 756?

This girl.


Media lovin,’ multi-sport athlete, attention-seeking Coley.

All my life I’ve wanted to be famous. I’ve imagined my face on that big billboard in Times Square since I was 7. And there Luke is, in New York of all places, playing for the New York Knicks. Luke is living the life that I have always dreamed of for myself.

And he doesn’t even want it.

He just wants to play the game.

He plays because he loves basketball with all of his heart.

And I can’t say the same.

I think that's what's hardest for me.

Don't get me wrong, I enjoy it. I like playing. But I love performing. I love putting on a show. Sometimes I feel like that’s what I’ve always done. God gave me the talent to play sports. So, in order to put on a show like my favorite Broadway stars do, I must play basketball the only way I know how— like a performer.

Luke, on the other hand, does not play that way. He plays the same way he does his physics homework.

He uses his IQ. Then attacks. No fun and games. Maybe an occasional smile, because he loves to play, but not because the camera's on him and he wants to give the crowd a little somethin somethin (like his sister used to do).

My goal is still to one day be plastered amongst the billboards of Times Square, whether it be through modeling, commercial work, or color commentating, because that’s where my true love lies. It’s who I am; it's what makes me happy.

But most importantly, I can't let jealously creep in.

All my life I've envisioned this picture perfect lifestyle for myself. I was going to be a famous athlete, marry a NFL quarterback, and live in a mansion in Los Angeles, California.

The funny thing is— God’s kinda done that, but better.

He has given me what I truly wanted.

I’m at UCLA, I’m broadcasting, and I’m dating the best man in the world.

Meet Sean.

Guys, I met him at church.

Left side.

Across the aisle.

Fifth pew from the front.


Blonde hair.

Blue eyes.


(And a quarterback).

Now tell me that isn’t God-ordained.

He may not be an NFL quarterback, my first name may not be Gisele, he may not have 50,000 followers, I might just always be "the sister of a NBA player," and that's okay.

Luke will always have his thing, and I will always have mine. That's how it's always been. As similar as we are, in some ways we couldn't be more different.

I've always wanted to be the Keith Urban, and he doesn't give two toots about that. But once I start comparing myself to others, doubting my own abilities, and allowing jealousy to overtake me I need remember the Cardinal sin:

Comparison is the thief of all joy.

The public's perception of you will always fluctuate, which is why sometimes I can feel myself fluctuating with it. It's not about who you know, who you date, or what you do.

Yeah, I like famous people, I struggle because I'm human, but I want to make a difference, and I believe one day I will.

However, right now I have a ways to go. I have some growing up to do.

So, in the meantime, model yourselves after the Luke Kornets, the Sean McKaveneys, and the humble hearts who want to serve, rather than be served.

I know I will.

Proverbs 22: 
A good name is more desirable than great riches;
    to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.
Rich and poor have this in common:
    The Lord is the Maker of them all.
The prudent see danger and take refuge,
    but the simple keep going and pay the penalty.
Humility is the fear of the Lord;
    its wages are riches and honor and life.
The generous will themselves be blessed,
    for they share their food with the poor.
One who loves a pure heart and who speaks with grace
    will have the king for a friend.


  1. Coley... This is fantastic! Saying things that not only you but others are thinking and feeling themselves.

  2. Your posts always bring a smile and sometimes a tear. This one did both.

  3. Beautiful. "Comparison is the thief of all Joy". So true. Your Mama is PROUD!!!

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