How I was granted a wish of a lifetime
Seven months of anxiety and anticipation suddenly came to a halt when my wish to meet Golden State Warriors point guard Stephen Curry was finally granted via the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
My alarm clock rang at 6:30am as if I was waking up for a usual school day, but this was no ordinary Monday. This was much more significant than any other school day in my life. This was the day that my wildest dream became a reality.
A limousine was sent to pick up my family and I and make our way to the Marriott Hotel in downtown Oakland. In the limousine, my family and I tried to plan for what was in store but even our most underivative imagination could not hint at was going to transpire throughout this miraculous day.
We reached the hotel and were asked to wait in the lobby. About 15 minutes later, a Warriors representative approached me and asked if I was Shawn Rocha. I excitedly answered yes! We began to mingle and she then let us know that she would be our personal “tour guide” for the day. Once she explained the day’s agenda, she brought over a pair of blue and yellow Curry shoes. Curry has a deal with Under Armour and I too would need to be wearing the brand he endorses. I rapidly took off my old Nike Air Maxes and replaced them with the newly released Curry Twos.
Finally, around 12:30pm, I got my first glimpse of the two-time MVP. While at the practice facility, my family and I were able to watch Stephen Curry shoot some hoops. Surprisingly, that wasn’t the most astonishing thing that took place on that court. While recording the team’s practice on my phone, I saw a hand (the size of my face) extend for a handshake; it was Stephen Curry’s fellow splash brother Klay Thompson. Klay sat down to talk with me for a bit. I was in such shock. Holding a simple conversation seemed nearly impossible and all I kept thinking was “Oh My God!” After a brief conversation, the Golden State Warriors shooting guard said his farewells and signed my hat. During this time we also got to meet a few other players.
The time had come; we made our way to an office area occupied by Warriors Executives who then led us into a really bright room with glass doors. At this point, we were surprised yet again, as we found out that PlayStation was also sponsoring this event. PlayStation had gone out of their way to set up a game center where I could play Stephen Curry in a game of 2K, a basketball video game.
From the moment Stephen Curry walked in, he had a big smile on his face as if I was the one granting his wish! As soon as he approached me, I felt tingles run up my spine. The entire experience was so surreal. I felt like I was the only one in the room, and yet there were tons of people surrounding us including the rest of my family. After talking for about 15 minutes or so, it was time to find out if he possessed skills with the controller in his hand rather than a basketball. Anticipating that Curry would select the Golden State Warriors, I decided I would attempt to beat him with the team closest to his heart. I chose the historic Charlotte Hornets which featured his father, Dell Curry. Long story short, I beat Steph pretty easily, and more importantly, I put an exclamation point at the end of an already phenomenal day.
This experience taught me a lot more than the simple cliché, “dreams really come true.” It taught me that being assertive can be positive and that it can open up many bright doors and opportunities. I also was reminded that if you surround yourself with kind-hearted people, amazing things follow. I am very appreciative of Make-A-Wish Foundation and all the efforts taken to make my Wish come true. I can only hope to be a part of something this rewarding for others someday.