I'm still sad that I missed my high school graduation. We had a tournament in Italy, and I was just breaking into the starting roster.
Looking back, would you change anything from that time?
When I was in college, I remember regretting that I'd missed my high school graduation. Then it turned out that my college graduation was during a tournament as well. By then, though, I had a little more fun on the team, you know? [LAUGHS] But I said to the coach, 'Sorry, I'm missing this game. I'm not missing my only two graduations in life.'
So I don't regret it. People say 'Oh, you had to make all these sacrifices.' But I'm like: How many people get the opportunity to play for their country - to go to the Olympics or the World Cup? So they're not sacrifices. It's just something you choose to do. And I will never regret it.
Since you joined the national team, you've seen it grow from nothing to winning the World Cup and Olympic gold. You saw the WUSA come and go. How do you feel about the state of women's soccer in the U.S. today?
Well, it's an interesting time because we don't have a league anymore. The national team has been really quiet. There's still so much potential for growth and yet we're not tapping into it. The Federation had five domestic games this year. The teams are training on their own again, and it just smells of times past. We spent so many days on our own, training and trying to keep fit on our own, and you just can't sustain a winning team that way.
The good news is that there's a strong group working on reviving the league, and that seems to be getting some really positive reactions from owners and investors and fans. So you never know.
It's something like what you guys are doing with this documentary - young kids will see this and realize it's worthwhile, not just to the players but to society - all these young girls and boys out there. I think it's healthy when they see professional athletes, be it men or women.
The film deals with the journey that you guys went through, but also the friendships and the affection you have for each other. So just for fun, what would surprise a lot of people about the '91ers?
Bad hair? I had some bad, bad hair. That was embarrassing, Mom. For God sakes, how did you let me go out like that?
I think the great thing about the '91 team is that they're a group of women that were completely committed to the game, but at the same time there was always laughter ringing in the halls, the bus, everywhere -- which is something we talk a lot about now. Everything we did was fun.
The mentality was still very competitive, the 'I will rip your head off if you're in my way.' [LAUGHS] We are a blue collar team. We may not have been the most skilled team in the world back in 1991, but we probably had the strongest mentality I've ever seen - probably because that's all we really had. And that was great, because it gave us a vision for what the team could become, and we did become.
Do you miss playing at all?
I don't, actually.
I miss the team. I just miss hanging out. I got paid to hang out with my best friends every day. It's a beautiful thing. But I don't miss playing. I think after 17 or 18 years on the team, you come to a point where it's time you should try something else.
Is coaching a possibility?
No. Maybe a water girl. [LAUGHS]
What do you feel like doing next? Go back to medical school?
Right, that's what everyone says. I'm like 'Get out of here!' Retaking the MCATs would be ugly. I've got a lot of things going on my plate. I'm doing some advocacy work for the Women's Sports Foundation, doing a lot of television and speaking engagements and sponsorship stuff. So I haven't settled down to just one path, one career choice, which I think is a good thing.