Monday, June 6, 2016

Taking a Break

I'm taking a break from derby, at least for the summer. If I miss it, I'll go back in the fall when it's cooler. If not, well ... then not.

I made a list of pros and cons of quitting. The pros included things like reduced stress, reduced drama, having my evenings free (most hobbies don't require 3-4 evenings per week) and not having to skate in a hot rink on 100-degree days. The cons included loss of exercise, possible loss of friends, fear of missing out, and seeing everyone's posts about it on Facebook all the time.

Well, I hope that I don't lose friends. That would be truly sad. I've made some amazing friends through roller derby, and I will do my best to maintain those relationships. I will still support my league in whatever ways I can -- I hope to help with training the juniors, when that starts up again. I will also continue to donate through Amazon and Fred Meyer. I'll still encourage anyone who wants to give derby a try. Just because I fell out of love with it -- after 7 years -- doesn't mean it's not a fun thing to do!

But ... meanwhile, I need to find myself a new adventure. It might be running, of all the damn things. One way or another, I have to find another form of exercise that I will stick with. And pronto.

So let's not call this goodbye. Let's call it "smell ya later."

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

We got booted out of our rink in summer of 2014. Now it's the beginning of summer, 2016, and we have been back in the rink for three weeks. So yeah, it took almost two years to finish the repairs. This is entirely because we were doing it with volunteer labor and practically no money. We had a wonderful contractor donating his time to us, and without him we would surely not have gotten it done as fast as we did. So please, please don't think I'm complaining about anyone who worked on the repairs. They are all wonderful.

But oh man. Two years away (we did have practices in the summer, so in fact it had only been about 6 months since I had skated), and it's really hard to go back. I found that I enjoyed having my evenings free. I found that although I missed playing the sport of roller derby, I didn't really miss skating that much. I found that I still super suck at skating backwards ... and that is one of the required skills. In two weeks, we're testing on the non-contact part of WFTDA minimums. Anyone who doesn't pass that will have to go to boot camp -- basically, go back to beginner level. If I don't pass, I think I will take it as a sign that it's time for me to do something else.

It's not all mental/emotional. There's also the fact that my bad ankle hurts pretty much all the time (not sharp pain, more of an ache). Or the fact that my pinkie toes are turned sideways and it's uncomfortable to wear shoes, let alone roller skates. Sigh. But here's the thing: if I retire from derby, I'll inevitably lose some of the friends I've made through it. I'm not saying people will just decide, "If you're not skating, you can suck it." I'm saying that when I'm not seeing people all the time, it will be harder to stay connected with them. It's not like I'm a social butterfly.  I'll also miss the sport itself. I'll miss hitting people, and I'll miss being a member of a team. I'll miss being Dixie Skullpopper.

Well, I'm not giving up yet. I'm going to do my best to push through the pain when I'm skating backwards (damn shin splints). I'll try to get out of my head and just jump over the 6" piece of foam. (Those are the two skills I'm worried about). And if it doesn't happen ... well, I guess I'll need to find both a way to stay connected with my friends, and a different way to get exercise.

I don't think anyone actually reads this blog anymore, and I can't blame them -- I post to it about every two years. I wouldn't read it either. Well, we'll see what happens.