A few weeks ago I came to a crossroads — a life decision I didn’t know how to make.
To skate or not to skate.
I started figure skating when I was six and never really stopped. To this day I don’t think I’ve gone more than a month without time on the ice, and even then it was for a broken toe. But as I get older and older, this hobby, nay, lifestyle is harder and harder to fit into my life. I am busy, yet I still find myself making time for this sport, no matter how inconvenient it is to fit around my schedule. There were many factors which I won’t bore you with, but it was a big decision. My skating partner and I are only a few tests away from getting a gold medal in free dance, but it is a lot of effort, time and money if we aren’t able to finish. So last week we sat down to flesh it out and make a decision.
With the way it has completely shaped who I am, it simply feels impossible to give it up. Even beyond the fact that it lead me to some of the most amazing friends, has given me almost two decades of regular exercise, and has provided me with incredible opportunities, skating has taught me so many life lessons that relate to lots other areas of my life.
1. When you fall, get back up and try it again.
2. Perfection is unrealistic, but is something you should always strive for.
3. Take competition seriously, but don’t let it ruin your day.
4. Set big goals so you have a place to aim.
5. A big, cheeseball smile goes a long way. Fake it until you make it.
6. The best results come when your blades are sharp.
7. Always warm up and stretch.
8. When you’re having an “off” day, sometimes it’s best to just walk away and try again tomorrow.
9. Most of your obstacles or inabilities are a mental game. Success or failure — it’s all in your head.
10. There is nothing more rewarding than facing huge challenges, working your tail off and performing your best followed by a big round of applause.
Ultimately, I decided to I just wasn’t ready for that last performance. I’m going for the Gold, baby. Here’s to the rink — my home, my gym, my playground, my meeting place, my mentor.