It might not be normal to just hop on a plane and move to a completely different country for some people, but I was out the door the moment SMU came calling.
That’s a big part of growing up, right—traveling the world and meeting new people?
I guess I just wanted to get out of my comfort zone and experience something new. There was something about the whole concept of moving to a new country—many, many miles away—that really excited me.
Of course, it came as a big shock to everyone back home in Norway that I ultimately decided to take this route. Words can’t even describe the love I have for my country and family, but that was a choice I had to make for myself.
Looking back, it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.
The chance to play soccer and go to school was the biggest selling point for me on this journey.
It has always been important for both me and my family to get a good education. But where I come from, there really aren’t a lot of opportunities that combine both school and athletics. So this decision was about more than me just going away for the sake of a new experience.
It was a chance to do something I wouldn’t have been able to do otherwise.
There are a lot of cool things about being a student-athlete, but do you want to know the best thing?
You’re blessed with 20 or so friends right off the bat in your first few days on campus. It makes it easier to fit in when you’re the new guy, you know? You walk right through those doors and know immediately that your teammates have your back.
There’s nothing else in the world quite like that feeling.
But that bond doesn’t come without its challenges.
We all want to win, and we’re all driven to do whatever it takes to get to where we need to be to succeed. But it’s hard to let things go sometimes too, you know?
You lose a game, and you’re always talking to your teammates about it. What went wrong? What can we do to fix it? Is this something we need to worry about in the future?
It starts to become hard to block that kind of stuff out and just move on to the next game. Sometimes, it’s real easy to get caught up and linger on those bad experiences.
But then you realize this experience isn’t just about wins and losses.
It’s about appreciating a moment that may not come again for any of us.
Every soccer kid growing up dreams of turning professional one day and playing for one of the top leagues, but as you get older, you realize not everybody is going to make it.
So it’s important to me to make the most of this opportunity here at SMU, and just enjoy every moment together as a team.
Speaking of moments, nothing beats winning big games and celebrating those accomplishments with your teammates. I’ve been fortunate enough to win a couple of conference championships during my time here, and those moments were easily amongst the best experiences of my life.
You can feel it as soon as you walk into the locker room. You look around the room and see the excitement on everyone’s faces.
Just knowing you accomplished a goal together—I don’t know, man. It’s the greatest feeling in the world.