Reluctantly, Roller Skates

It’s true. After two years of not having roller skates on my feet, I sit her typing, with skates on them…reluctantly?

I’m not sure what to think as I have found my own place in the roller derby community. It’s a bright, shiny place for me in the world of announcing. I get to use a lot of the talents I’ve cultivated over the years into it. I get to talk, geek out about stats, TALK about sports and more specifically roller derby. Yay! I even get to travel and see amazing teams compete AND see some of my roller derby heroes.

If you would’ve told me a year ago that I’d currently have skates strapped to my feet, I would have laughed in your face outright. After the break of my fibula, and two horribly failed attempts to go back to the sport, I gave up and decided skating just wasn’t for me. I didn’t want to break again. I would never be good enough to scrimmage or ref, which became my goal.

To me, horribly failed attempts at derby looked like being: afraid I would break again, being intimidated by how fast the “newbies” picked up the drills, and just really being afraid.

Reflecting back, they weren’t horribly failed attempts because I got skates back on my feet 4 months after I broke and was skating. I got my plate removed and was skating again after transferring to Ohio Roller Derby. So I tried twice with OHRD — which means really I went back THREE times. I faced my fears in many ways.

Now I’m facing them again.

So why the hell now? That’s a very good question. Writing for the WFTDA (Women’s Flat Track Derby Association) and being around derby so much, has made me start fantasizing about my skates again. I dreamed about skating the other night. It’s as if the Skating Gods were calling to me like a beacon, a siren — or maybe that siren is the warning of an ambulance. Time will tell.

I’ve been watching lots of CIB videos — Formerly Chicks in Bowls but now just goes by CIB to be as inclusive as possible — and wanting to skate. Those are some of the most talented humans I’ve ever seen on eight wheels! So I got an itch that I had when I was trying to get back to skating — I want to go to a skate park, and drop in ONCE, before I die. It’s entirely possible that I would die, see reference to ambulance above.

But…BUT…it could be exhilarating ! I could actually do it. What if by mid-summer I could drop in? What if I could be a member of CIB and not just cheer around the concrete — which is TOTALLY valid and super awesome.

So baby skate steps at a time. I’ll just be scooting around the house with skates attached to my feet. I’ll be doing some leg strengthening exercises and practice shifting my weight from one skate to the other. I’ll just be seeing how long I can stand on one skate at a time because practice.

I don’t want to derby. I derby with announcing. But I want to skate…with safety gear of course. And a time limit so that my spouse knows when to start looking for a body.

But for today I am proud. Today I put skates on TWICE and although I found it jarring when I was lacing up and saw my scar, I did it anyway. Screw you stupid break! I got this!

If you have the chance, do check out cibcrew.com. They do amazing things with helping communities grow and expand who is welcomed to skate parks, a place that is quite intimidating for so many of us.

Also, check out Ohio Roller Derby at OhioRollerDerby.com — there are some great humans in that league! 🙂

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