ClitterBomb

ClitterBomb

with Woodland Area Roller Derby!

first-warmish-day-in-awhiledecided-to-wear-skating-skirt-to-practice-outdoor-tennis-court-ate-it-once-kept-going-until-evened-out-the-road-rash-still-have-a-shadow-of-the-one-on-copy3

On the  first warm-ish (“ish”- see the scarf??) day in a while Clitty decided to wear her skating skirt to practice… at the outdoor tennis court. In true derby style, after she ate it once she kept going until the road rash was evened out! If you look really closely, you can see that she still has a shadow of the one on her cheek.

Luckily for the world of derby,  this adventurous skater was not scared away, and continues to rock the track- booty shorts and all!

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Chelle Shock

Chelle Shock

with the Sac City Rollers!

 

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Such a pretty face.

But look a little closer- nothing like a little mouth to helmet contact to make your day! Admittedly, this photo is a bit less dramatic than some others, but the potential for damage from this itty bitty looking wound is out of this world! Shout out to her mouth guard for allowing her to keep her front teeth.

I Didn’t Make the Team

I didn’t make the team.

All of the practices, cross-training, volunteering, miles driven, hours given, date nights forgone, family time sacrificed, sleep short-changed, money spent, blood and tears spilt- it wasn’t enough.

My best just wasn’t enough.

I don’t know if you have ever had to look yourself in the eye and admit that, but let me tell you, it’s tough. Now imagine having to look everyone else in the eye while admitting that, everyone else who made it while you got left behind. You weren’t good enough. They know it; you know it. No apologies.

Never mind the fact that the decision was a fair one; I myself felt far from ready for competition. It’s just that although I knew I had a long way to go, I didn’t know the road would be so long, or so hard. I didn’t realize that I would be kicked from the grownup’s table before I had even secured a seat. It hurt. A lot. Did I mention I found out the news on my birthday? (Sorry for ya!) I felt like a part of me had died.

Practices became a thing to endure, my eyes downcast as I pretended not to hear the celebratory salutations echoing around me. Volunteering at bouts and other derby events held no appeal. I hadn’t made the team, they weren’t my victories. It became extremely difficult to justify being away from home so often. I couldn’t bear to be so involved with something I thought didn’t want me. I even unfollowed my derby friends on Facebook.  How could I continue to give so much to something that that gave so little in return? Why was I even doing this? Clearly, I had no place in roller derby. Like a dog with my tail between my legs, I withdrew, or at least I tried to.

The only thing worse about not doing derby, is not doing derby when you desperately want to.

Hiding at home, doing my best to avoid my previous life, pretending that I was better off without all of the hassle was really not working for me. Quitting was proving to be the most difficult thing of all. I had already invested so much of myself in this. Besides, I had just bought a ton of team swag to wear. At this point roller derby and I had gone way beyond a casual fling. We were going steady! I couldn’t continue to go to bed angry.

I learned so much during those dark days of derby depression- lessons in humility, perseverance, and what it really means to be a part of a team. What a fool I had been, thinking I could just walk away. Ride or die, baby- we are a team!

I opened my heart again, and let the light of the quad shine in.

There are worse things than not making a team. Like quitting; quietly walking away from a dream and watching it die, doing nothing to ease the suffering; allowing misery, self-doubt, and shame to replace your ambitions; being content with boring, safe, easy. Worse looks like using your kids, job, spouse as excuses to put off being awesome. Because you know you would have been, IF ONLY given the opportunity. Well guess what- no one gives you greatness. You want to be strong, someone important, the type of person to whom others look to reaffirm their own ambitions? You gotta work for it. That type of greatness must be earned. There are no easy paths. And when your path to great involves a demonstrable skill, there is no hiding behind good intentions and a smile.

I grew up. These women are amazing. How can I stay away? Despite my recent bout of wishy-washy and suckitude, they continue to greet me with a smile. My failings are met with words of support and encouragement. Most importantly, they still hit without apology. And for that I am grateful.

Rammin’ Noodles

Rammin’ Noodles

of the Border City Brawlers!

angie loo- sprained ankle- doing one foot jumps... Over rotated and landed on my ankle. Heard a pop

This is what happens when you do one foot jumps, over-rotate your ankle, and hear a pop! Ouch!

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But true to form- our friendly neighbors up North are hard to keep down-

It's going to be a good day when your kinesio tape matches your toes. Accidentally on point!.jpg

“It’s going to be a good day when your kinesio tape matches your toes. Accidentally on point!”

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Just look at how much fun Frankle (Frank the Cankle) is having:

Frank the cankle- frankle- at the fights and derby practice. refuse to slow down.jpg

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Ms. Rammin’ Noodles- I love your style!

Aleithal Weapon

Aleithal Weapon of the Sac City Rollers!

This Capital Captain is the perfect blend of all things derby. Check out her tiny and polite shiner. Such a lady, right? But of course! However, this is derby, so …..

Alethial Weapon

BOOM!

weapon africa

From beauty to beast!

Garnering accolades and admirers with her legendary Africa Bruise, Aleithal Weapon continues to teach, inspire, and amaze in the world of derby!

Annie Reksic

Annie Reksic of the Sac City Rollers!

This Capitol Punisher took some capitol punishment- all for the love of derby!

annie all for the love of derby       annie reksic acl surg 2014.

With her ACL needing some TLC, she took it to the MD. Here she is post-surgery 2014. My jaw literally dropped when I saw this. It makes me feel like puking- but in the best way possible! Watching her glide around the track one would never suspect she once suffered such a setback. Thanks for keepin’ on keepin’ on and reminding us that we can never be broken!

 

Smug Jiggles and the Triumph of Shame

boss

My very first introduction to roller derby was at 3 months postpartum. Nothing fit me and I ended up wearing an awful pair of hideous velour sweatpants and a huge, dumb shirt. Also, even though I had loved roller skating as a child, I didn’t really know how to roller skate as a middle-aged potato. I looked like a hot mess on wheels.

It took a tremendous amount of willpower to thrust myself into such dynamic, awkward, vulnerability. Convinced that I was an ugly, misshapen, clumsy, leaky blob, I was VERY self-conscious. Because I was too self-conscious to wear anything that might have called attention to my figure, I ended up wearing clothes that I found distracting. This in turn hindered my concentration and performance.

It was hard to get out of my own head, and wearing such stifling clothing made me miserable, but somehow I managed to do the best I could in my vintage (old) pink and white skates. Something within me knew this was a turning point. Judgement from a group of cool, fit, athletic women was terrifying, but failing to pursue something I loved because I was too afraid to try was unimaginable. I would just have to deal with the chafing, heat, and sideways glances. In truth, it wasn’t very fun. But it was something I needed to do, so I did. I am proud of my perseverance but wish I hadn’t been so ashamed of my appearance.

Fast forward four years and I am skating several days a week making steady progress towards my goals. I am obviously older (and hopefully wiser) than when I first started. These days I lace up a sweet pair of Riedells when I hit the track. My gear bag has bling. I fall with style. Roller derby has taught me so much about how to love and accept my body for the great things it allows me to accomplish.

Why did I stress about my appearance for so long? Why did I let my own negative thoughts hold me back? What a waste. I know I am not the only one. Where do these toxic thoughts come from, and why do we allow them to linger??

When young, we eat what we want, we run everywhere, and we wear anything. In the most innocence sense of the word, we just don’t give a fuck. Where along the path of youth do we lose our common sense? What provokes many of us to abandon our carefree ways and adopt habits counterintuitive to our own sense of self? That magical, frustrating, beautiful transformation of girl to women is a plethora of obstacles. To make sense of the world we rely on many different sources of information, not all of them healthy. Growing up is hard.

I am a reasonably intelligent human being. Why did it take me almost 20 years to relearn that wearing shorts when it is hot is actually a really good idea? I have great legs. They have always been great; even when I was unwilling or unable to acknowledge it. They have carried me confidently throughout my life, from adventure to adventure. Scarred, veined, tattooed- my legs are healthy, strong, and beautiful. I know this now. I KNOW this now.

It has been a long, often uncomfortable, and occasionally painful process. Body acceptance is an obvious work in progress, but I am off to a great start. Now when I skate, I wear whatever is appropriate for the situation. Focusing on my insecurities has become less of a preoccupation. I will never again let my shame force me to suffer through extremely hot practices in extremely hot clothes. Let my tummy rolls proudly pooch through my tank top when I get into my derby stance! And when somebody hip checks me and sends me into the floor, my thighs will jiggle smugly, with my cellulite staring defiantly from beneath my really short shorts. Who cares?! This is roller derby! Ain’t nobody got time for that- I am an athlete!

Be kind to yourselves, ladies. And be careful. Shame is a powerful motivator. Thankfully for me, roller derby is even more powerful.

Disneyland

Two Minutes Ago

Roller derby is a strategic, fast-paced, fiercely competitive athletic event. Two teams of five badass women each work together to amass as many points as humanly possible in games called bouts. A roller derby bout is played in two periods of 30 minutes. Point scoring occurs during jams. Each jam lasts up to two minutes. It is INTENSE.

Have you ever been in an intense moment requiring your absolute concentration? Have you ever been so captivated that you lost all focus of the world surrounding? Have you ever experienced utter terror?

Two minutes can be a REALLY long time.

In the best of circumstances that moment is beautiful and transformative; head too far in the opposite end of that spectrum and you are locked into a hellacious vacuum of the never-ending. The space-time continuum of roller derby nestles neatly into that hellaciously beautiful creamy center.

We play the way we practice. While infinitely rewarding, training is brutal. Several times I have walked away proud simply because I did not vomit on the track. A newbie badass in training, I make A LOT of mistakes. One mistake in particular stuck in my craw. I will not bore you with the details of how I disappointed my coach, failed my teammates, and shamed myself. Instead I will bless you with the sage advice spat by my mentor-

“That was two minutes ago.”

In all truth, I will wager nobody remembers what I did to elicit the comment. Probably it was nothing. I don’t even remember. Recollection tends to lead me down the drama hole, but all the same, the message was visionary and clear. That.Was.Two.Minutes.Ago. A moment long gone. Suck it up buttercup.

Was it really two minutes? No. More like 15 or maybe 30 minutes. It could have been an hour. But that is not the point. My wise and loving, yet crushingly blunt, coach really drove the home that point that it is futile to dwell on pointless anchors of negativity. From the instant of whatever it was I was seeking clarification/validation on to the present moment of our conversation, the only person who had even thought of the so-called event of distinction was me. In the grand scheme of things, that one event was so minuscule that not a single other person had even noticed. I had burdened myself unnecessarily.

We all suck sometimes. Inevitably we all fuck up. Some of us fail quietly and discreetly; and some of us in large blazes of mortifyingly undignified shit-balls-of-fire. Whilst in the moment, it can be easy to lose hope and get down on ourselves, but that doesn’t help anyone. When you fall, you get back. Deal with the mess you made and keep going.

Because that fuck up? That was two minutes ago.

 

Big Girl Panties

~ Boss Taco of the Sac City Rollers