Saturday, 10 May 2014

Two Years On (Part Two)

So I know I can talk a lot about the things you can lose at a moment’s notice. Today is all about what you can make out of it and the opportunities it can present.

As soon as the decision was made that I wouldn’t be skating any more I had to look at my options. I could quit and leave the league altogether but that just wasn’t an option in my head. We all know how addictive this game is and how your team become your second family. At this point I think I needed them more than ever so leaving just wasn’t going to happen for me. So what about NSOing? Well, I had NSO’d a lot over my time on skates and continued to after stopping but it didn’t quite cut it for me. I needed that competition, that drive to win and to feel a part of a team. So that left bench staffing. Could I do that? Did I have the knowledge? The skills? Would people even like me?!

Anxieties aside, it was the obvious choice for me. So about six months after the injury I benched my first game – a mixed opener for DRR. I had three of my teamies with me which was actually really nice as we kind of supported each other through our first games together. I remember having a team talk before the game started and thinking “god, I hope I look like I know what I’m talking about!!” and just being a bag of nerves. Then the first whistle blew and it all disappeared. I suddenly had a job to do so I just kind of got on with it. It all passed in a blur but we managed to take the win which felt nothing short of amazing. I found it really emotional as I thought I would never experience that win, because I couldn’t skate anymore, so when I did it really blew me away. That first
game really was the start of a new chapter for me and I went from strength to strength. A recent highlight was being able to line up for an all star England team. I felt totally out of my depth working with the likes of Kitty Decapitate and Stefanie Mainey but it was such an incredible game to be a part of.

The stand-out high point for me was being voted in as line up for my league’s A-team. I worked for a long time to get there and it really felt incredible to be recognised by my home league as being worthy of working at that level. I will be forever thankful for the opportunities that they have offered me and will never forget the support I received during the most difficult of times. The girls on that team truly are my heroes and every day I hope to be considered good enough to continue to work with them again, in any context. I’ve continued to work with mixed teams of varying levels but I don’t think anything will ever match that feeling of belonging I got from that season.

The point is that life doesn’t always go the way you’d planned or hoped for but in going wrong, it often presents us with opportunities we might never have encountered otherwise. Next time something goes wrong, don’t call it going wrong. Call it going differently, because that’s all it is. Fate is what happens to you, destiny is what you do with it.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Two Years On (Part One)

Two years ago today I went to training and put on my skates. Little did I know it would be the last time.

If you have read my previous blog posts you’ll already know what happened on the day so I won’t go into that all over again. What I want to talk about is appreciating what you have. It’s a concept we are all familiar with but in terms of skating; do we always give it 100%? Everyone will have off days, I’m not trying to imply that everyone can or should do everything perfectly at every training session and every game, that’s just not how the world works. What I’m talking about is the want and the need to be on skates. We don’t always feel like going to training. That night out or Sunday morning lie-in seems a much nicer option. And then when you get to training, sometimes the energy just isn't there and it feels like you’re going through the motions a bit. Being at training is about far more than just turning up. It’s about dedicating that time to nothing but training, working hard, sweating buckets and trying to make improvements every session.

Imagine if, one day, someone told you that your skating career was over. That your goals would never be met, you would never lace up your skates again. This is not a naggy post and I’m not trying to bring anyone down but seriously, appreciate your skates. You never know what might be around the corner.

Wednesday, 9 April 2014

The Awkward Middle Stage...

Anyone that’s lost a big amount of weight will understand what I’m talking about here!

I was going through my wardrobe today trying to find something for casual lunch with some friends and discovered that nothing really fits me. Now this would be fine except I’ve been at this point for about a month now. Jeans are all too big and fall down or too small and won’t do up – it really is that big of a difference. So here I am at a size 21, apparently, and desperately trying to find the motivation to carry on with my weight loss. It’s no secret that I’ve stalled recently. This is partly due to my body having enough and partly down to my new found party lifestyle which in no small part is due to my boosted confidence of late. 

Now, of course I want to be able to feel fabulous in my wedding dress and I would love to be able to think about the things that “normal” sized people think about when they are buying clothes “does it look good? How can I style it” etc etc. Instead, I have to think about how big my hips are and if it’s going to cling to my belly. But at this stage, it almost seems a better option to give up and gain a small amount of weight back so that my jeans will fit me again!

That said, I find it really easy to forget how far I’ve come already. I’ve lost four stone over the past 18 months or so. Yes, it’s a lot slower than I had hoped for but I’m still in a much better situation than I was. My BMI has come down by 10 whole points and I now only have the one chin. But ultimately, I’m not where I want to be yet. I still want to lose 3-4 dress sizes and, even though BMI charts are wildly inaccurate, I would love to get into the “healthy weight” category. I just want to be happy in my own skin, I don’t ever remember feeling like that about myself.

So, here are my new targets;
Celebrate what you have already achieved
Keep the goal in mind – ALL THE TIME!!
Celebrate the small victories. Even the tiny ones.

Let's see how long I can stick to these shall we....