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The Iso Journal: Briiana "Simba" Gorrell

With the cancellation of the WNFC 2020 season, our players have had to adjust not only to missing an entire season of football, but also to practicing safe distancing due to a global pandemic. We want to hear about it.

Inspired by The Players’ Tribune, The WNFC is excited to introduce a new blog series, "The Iso Journal", where we catch up with our superstars to find out how they've spent their time in isolation, what they are doing to prepare for the 2021 pre-season, and how they are remaining #WNFCproud off the field.

Quarantine has put my mental on the clearest track it’s been on in years. It made even clearer the type of energies I will no longer allow in my circle. Everybody isn't meant to be around. I stopped wasting so much energy on dead situations and started doing things for me. Once I made that change, things leveled out in my head.

You can't be good for anyone else if you're not good for yourself first. I've always been the strong friend and the advice giver. I took other people’s issues on as my own and tried to solve them. I pushed my problems to the back burner and forgot about them until they boiled over. It's okay to be a caring, giving, and helpful person, but you can’t give your all to somebody with nothing left for you. The last few months have allowed for me to actually focus on myself.

I worked as a fundraiser for the Save the Children organization. Due to our constant proximity to people in high traffic areas, my job was one of the first to go after COVID-19 began. I started with Instacart and Shipt to earn income and pass the days quickly. Now I'm working security and still with Instacart in my down time.

When everything got crazy, I was with family for about the first month. After that, I went out more for work, but took the necessary precautions whenever I left the house. I've been by myself more since mid-April.

I tapped back into my love for writing and making music, drawing, reading, and cooking. With the mass amount of time on my hands, I got out of the habit of stopping for fast food. I eat a lot healthier and control my portions. I don't watch a lot of TV, but lately I've been catching up on the latest seasons of All-American, Queen of the South, and 13 Reasons Why.

I'm usually on a 90s R&B and Hip-Hop wave. My music range varies. You're almost certain to hear the following in my speakers and headphones: J. Cole, Nipsey, Wale, Kendrick, $imba G, Starseed Dro, Joey Vaio, Dan64, Smino, Tobi Lou, SiR, H.E.R, Brent Faiyaz, 11:11, Xavier Omar, Bahja Rodriguez, Sinead Harnett, and more. Be on the lookout for musical releases by $imba G.

Seeing things in a positive light and motivating myself to get going were challenges at first. I normally like training with a partner to keep me accountable and push me to give my all in each drill. The San Diego Rebellion have had numerous Zoom meetings each week since quarantine started. We have living room workouts and sessions to break down football basics. I’ve also been incorporating drills in my daily routine.

My San Diego Rebellion teammates are more of a family than teammates. We have had constant communication and check-ins to make sure we are good, physically, mentally, and emotionally. You can literally reach out to anybody if you're in need of anything. If they can't help, they will definitely find someone who can. The Rebellion genuinely care.

Football season is what I look forward to year-round. I can't even lie. When it was cancelled, I was shocked and upset. We had gotten into the swing of practices, just gotten a taste and had it ripped from under us. I am looking forward to playing football in 2021 and also to watching the Washington Prodigy and Texas Elite Spartans.

Simba running the ball with former WNFC team, the San Diego Surge
Simba running the ball with former WNFC team, the San Diego Surge

The WNFC has been making strides to provide the best possible platform for us to play football. Not only have they ALWAYS remained transparent, there's no hidden agendas or slander. Odessa Jenkins has reached out through email on numerous occasions to share information and check-in to make sure everyone is doing okay. The league has provided ways for athletes to stay involved and connected during this pandemic.

Everybody has their own reason for suiting up. Never forget yours. Stay motivated. Keep going. Remember your why. Whatever you want to achieve for your life, you can.

The only person that can stop you is YOU.

Briiana "Simba" Gorrell #42 DL/RB/ST

San Diego Rebellion

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