I had a rough night.

I recently transfered to this new league. It’s a ranked league that’s often seen at nationals. I came from a tiny tiny league in a small town on the coast of Maine. A big jump. Despite this, and despite warnings at the rink that “it’s very competitive,” and despite only having skated for 1-2 bouting seasons, I was sure my new league would find me “hometeam-ready.” They didn’t. And I was very disappointed. I did make the league, officially.

But, suffice it to say I was very sad last night. I gave it my all and I thought I would be allowed to skate with the home teams.

But it’s a new day. It’s the day I have to put on my great attitude and be a good athlete and true derby girl. Today is bounce back day. And I am. I feel better. I’m going to train harder. I’m now with a whole new bunch of women who are more experienced than I am and who are going to teach me a lot — and that excites me. I’ll be doing that  in “the pool” (non-drafted skaters and fresh meat) for a while. And that’s OK.

Actually, it reminds me of trying out for Footloose at my high school. It was my freshman year and I was cast as Alice. (There is no Alice in Footloose, by the way). “Is Alice an extra?” I asked the drama teacher. “Yes,” she said. “Oh. Great. I’m going to be the best extra ever,” I told her. She smiled.

I just have to be the best “select grade” transfer ever now. 🙂 I mean — I got onto a very good league with only a couple of bouting seasons under me. That’s something to be proud of.

The training committee told me it shouldn’t take me long to be a hometeam skater. They told me the skill I need to work on is my speed skating form. Of all the things that could have been said to a skater, that’s pretty good, I think. Attainable. It’s not my blocking, jamming, speed, endurance, attitude … tough things to work on.  I plan to show them my enthusiasm and how I welcome their input. I’ll find a buddy with great speed skating form and work on mine. I’ve emailed my local skate club and asked if they know anyone who would be interested in giving me some speed skating lessons.

Derby is about endurance. This is something to endure. Derby is about falling down and getting back up — quickly. This is my time to brush off any pain and put on my skates and get low until I’m drafted. Until I’m a better athlete. A better person. Wiser, more patient, more skilled. This is me, about to grow. And growth hurts and is fulfilling. All we can do is give it our all, try our best and leave it all on the track with no regrets. That’s what I plan to do next. I’m ready.

This is me brushing it off [and getting ready to work my hardest].
One thing I’m proud of: My bounced-backedness … resilience? Three things I’m grateful for: A community of readers I know will empathize and not criticize, time to work on my form, the [earned] privilege of being able to skate for this new league.

5 thoughts on “Grow.

  1. Hey lady! Troy, our speed skater Boddhisatva, gives lessons in Gresham Skate World on Mondays. He often doesn’t make RCR gals pay for at least their first lesson. Find him on Facebook and message him for more deets. He will make you a good speed skater. Also- get as much feedback from Rita Manual as possible. She is a form goddess and such a great teacher. I am, by no means, a speed skating expert but if you want feedback I’ll give it and I’ll take feedback any time myself. Message me if you want more info.

  2. Hard Dash you are a total bad ass skater and I keep hearing people say that they would love to see you in the next draft. I also transferred here and was ‘graded’ lower than what I thought I deserved…. If you wanna hear more about how I got over that, please just seek me out.

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