I used to ice skate 3 to 4 times per week. That was way back, 20 years ago. I stopped some 13 years ago. Never got into another sport since then. I also stopped taking jazz classes (which I used to take to complement figure skating). I tried to get back to skating a number of times but it was too difficult (and expensive and risky and impractical) I tried to get into swimming, but it was short lived. I thought about trying aerial silk. I never got past imagining my first class.
Then yesterday came. This must be a breakthrough. I had my first third swimming lesson.
First third. Yes. Yesterday was the first day of my third swimming class. The first class I took was when I was a kid. Six years old maybe. The second one was three years ago. This was the third one. The coach put me in advanced class. Seriously? Advanced? I had been a bit frustrated with my freestyle skills for the past 3 years. (Yeah it can go on for three years if you don’t do much about it.) But yesterday, I was so happy.
I enrolled in a 10 consecutive week days class. I never thought I’d commit to swimming this often but it just happened. It felt right. And so it was! I couldn’t be happier. And I realized I had been torturing myself for the past 13 years for not replacing the sport I lost.
I even wrote a poem about grieving its death. Yeah, I wrote a poem about losing my figure skating dream as if it were a person. Because it felt like something precious died when I stopped figure skating. I didn’t realize it immediately after I stopped, but it set in slowly. It was difficult to admit that I loved it that much. I mean, I can’t exactly make a career out of it because I was not that skilled in the sport yet, but it had also become too expensive and difficult for someone my age. (It’s a high impact sport. I had scoliosis. It’s an expensive sport. I was not filthy rich. Etc.)
Then life happened and it was kind of, sad.
I did a bit of yoga via YouTube. I downloaded some dance videos. I tried HIIT at home. But nothing beats a good ol’ sport. 🙂
Yesterday, my new coach corrected my freestyle technique. I finally felt like I was doing it correctly. For the first time in 13 years, I felt like I had a sport again. It’s like I could be alive again. I know it sounds silly, but that’s how I felt. At three decades old, I realized sometimes there are things we find hard to admit but admitting it could be the first step to breakthrough and healing. I think, today, I realized I needed to admit how I felt about figure skating. I also realized how I can’t run away from how I’m wired for sports. Just ‘coz I can’t make a career out of it does not mean I’m not allowed to make it a major part of my life. I guess I found it difficult to value something that doesn’t earn money. It felt irresponsible to do so. But I also realize now that acknowledging how I’m wired is a step towards worshipping God. It’s part of acknowledging how unique he’s made me to be and how I should love how he fashioned me. And I know ultimately, it will bring Him glory.
So YES YES, I can’t wait to swim again tomorrow. Ten consecutive weekdays remember? And to go on some more after that.
By the way, I’ll tell you about my 4-, 6-, and 9-year old swimming classmates next time. I didn’t enrol in a one-on-one class! And my oldest classmate is 9 years old. I know right? What do you think eh? 🙂