I started playing hockey as another challenge to take on heading into my 40th year.
We kind of did it on a lark…
I had just taken a Learn to Skate with Parks & Rec the year before and along with my dear friend Wendy, I threw together a Play It Again Sports Hockey Kit and set out for my first game.
It was awful.
I think I probably fell on my own about 15 times, ran into about 10 other players and nearly broke my back from wrenching from straight up fear of falling again.
I hated it. I ended up at the Chiropractor A LOT.
I promptly set about adding a hockey skills class at my local Canlan arena, two gals in a sea of guys trying to up our game.
Week after week I endured the frustration and challenge of not being able to keep the puck on my stick, giving it away like a hot potato, falling, crashing, learning to stop. You name it. I sucked at it.
There is something incredibly humbling about being really bad at the start of something new.
We kept going. We finished Winter Hockey and signed up for summer.
Somewhere along the way, I started loving playing hockey.
I had missed being on a team. I had missed being competitive about sport. I had missed pushing myself to get better at something.
This winter I am now in 2 hockey leagues, I practice once a week and I still do the hockey skills with the guys. We even convinced another friend to join us. If its an early game, all our kids come to cheer us on and nothing spurs you on more than a “GO Mommy GO!” The difference NOW is that I am smiling and SO proud when they come to watch us play.
Ok, so my son is not going to play in the NHL. Most likely because he doesn’t play hockey, which is a whole other post. Daughter doesn’t look destined to crack the bigs, as she keeps outvoting weekday broadcasts with Winx Club. So Hockey blood doesn’t run too deep in my house. Till now.
Jenn started playing hockey, if I recall, when she was asked why not. She couldn’t come up with a good answer, and wound up on skates after conning a few friends into a women’s beginner league. It was as expected. No skill, little knowledge, lots of apologizing for not being able to stop. Oh, and it was FUN. They came off the ice absolutely beaming about that one time they: stopped. hit the puck. did I mentioned stopped? It was awesome, but rudimentary. The ref seldom called interference because really, no intent or ability to turn…
Then they started taking classes. Words like edging, crossovers, and bar down crept into conversations. And the quality of hockey improved so dramatically the refs were gobsmacked by change, and said so!
I thought things were changing when it came to watching the game. Phrases changed from ‘whats offside again?’ to ‘Kadri was SO offside again!’. For a period. Then I get the push to head upstairs to finish on the kitchen tv while she dives through Netflix. Baby steps man.
The topic of playing together has come up a few times, but I am a bit different on the ice, and I am not sure our marriage is built to survive me screaming for a shift change using words that rhyme with puck…