The paths of the most promising players sometimes take different directions. Not all the best youngsters end up filling the biggest stadiums, or even reaching the top-50, for example. There are thousands of cases, but these people end up reinventing themselves, sometimes taking jobs that make them connect in some way to the sport they once were professionals at.

The story that concerns us today is different. Its protagonist, in this case, is. We talk about Reka Zsilinszka, university champion with the faculty of Duke back in 2009. Not only that: she had before her a promising future ahead, named as the best player of that tournament, twice chosen in the ideal team of the year and the second tennis player in the history of said university to reach the forty wins per season.

What no one could have foreseen, given the splendid future ahead, was that this woman would learn more off the tracks than within them. Reka learned at Duke not only how to connect big parallel setbacks, but also how to prepare to be a successful doctor. Now, with the urgency of this situation due to the pandemic of coronavirus, the extenista tells her story as nurse in an emergency unit from the University of Pennsylvania for

“When I started playing tennis and had minor injuries, I was going to see orthopedic doctors and I thought that was pretty cool. I wanted to be an orthopedic surgeon from the beginning, since I was 12 or 13 years old. So I switched to emergency medicine ” Now Reka has become one of those anonymous heroes of the healthcare system trying to save lives every day. There is no greater emergency situation, of course, than the current scenario; nothing prepares you for that … or yes.

“The ER is almost always in chaos, so that hasn’t changed. We have adapted well. Now it’s all very linear, always the same problem: respiratory failure due to coronavirus“These respiratory failures have prevented him from celebrating his honeymoon, scheduled for July.” The most difficult has been the interaction with the patient. As you can imagine, visitors are not allowed and many of these people get quite ill, they are completely alone. We are covered with our uniforms from head to toe, we give a terrifying image to patients. All of these factors make this job even more complicated and make it a hundred times harder. “

But the old Duke crack knows that he can put into play all the values ​​he learned years ago on the slopes. Especially those referring to ethics and willpower when it comes to doing any job. “I think that every athlete says the same thing: no matter what you do, having been an elite athlete makes you better in everything you set your mind to, be it business, law or medicine. In the case of medicine, there are shifts very early, shifts that last a long time and in general is based a lot on camaraderie. Many times you have to get psyched up and get it done, no matter what it costs, do the job and not complain. “

That work of mentalization is capital to be at 100%. Just as it happened on the courts, Zsilinszka now only has one objective: save lifes. “When I think that it is going to be a very busy shift, I will go to work listening to a playlist that motivates me, to face everything correctly. You have to put the” on “from the first moment, be with the five senses well stalls. It’s a bit like a tennis match: if you go out on the slow court, you won’t do very well, because you start 0-3 down. “