I have never been one to take photos with athletes. More out of shame than anything else. I have always been able to blush at fan moment. One of the few photos I remember with an athlete was the one I asked Núria Martínez, a player at the time for Perfumerías Avenida de Salamanca.
It would be 2005, I would be 14 years old and I coincided with the Spanish basketball team concentrated in a hotel in Cádiz, where I was also staying with my family. My father was the one who encouraged me to ask for the photo, knowing that, as embarrassing as it was, he was going to miss a unique moment. I also played basketball and since I met her in person, I wanted to be like Núria. When I saw her matches I would look at how she moved. He wanted to run like her, assist like her, shoot free throws with the same technique as hers. My father, who was the one who took our photo, insists to this day that we should take another one, almost 20 years later, and see how much we have both changed. The sport has also changed for women in this time. Fortunately a lot has changed, but unfortunately not enough.
Now the girls know that they can be like Alexia, Carolina Marín, Lydia Valentín or Sandra Sánchez. They can be who they want and what they want. Hence the importance of having female role models. I must confess that I am envious. From my sister, for example. When at 16 she goes to train with the Laia Palau shirt. I envy the girls and boys who go to the Wanda Sports City with a banner that says “Virginia, give me your shirt”. From Dania, the 8-year-old girl who fulfilled her dream of meeting Athenea del Castillo in the match between Alhama and Real Madrid. Also of the girls who want to be Alexia. I call it envy, but deep down I feel immense pride.
I once read that photography is the moment in which life stops. Pause. You press a button, you are left with only what is inside the frame and what has come out in the development just in that click. Many people must think that taking a photo is just that, press the button and that’s it. Easy. Anyone can do it. spoilers: It is not like this. For me, talking about “women’s day” is like taking a picture. We think that we should concentrate everything in that 10 cm wide by 15 cm high space, on that day, and forget about it for the rest of the year. March 9 is still our day and April 10 and August 25. Everyday of the year. We put on the medal on 8M and it seems that we comply with women and with women’s sports. Let no one forget to make the post on Instagram or Twitter today.
It has happened to me for some years that, when International Women’s Day approaches, there are people, institutions or the media that write to me to talk about the health of women’s sports, to tell my experience as a journalist in a world historically linked to the men. I understand the initiative, really. But what about the rest of the year? Is it only worth my experience that day and because I am a woman? It’s like those friends who congratulate you on your birthday and disappear for the rest of the year. Is not sufficient.
Let’s not forget about this. I don’t forget either: Núria, if you’re reading this, we owe each other a photo.
You can follow EL PAÍS Sports on Facebook and Twitteror sign up here to receive our weekly newsletter.
Subscribe to continue reading
Read without limits