*Fraud Alert*

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My board’s known nothing but calm waters…

I’ve had the nagging feeling of being a fraud lately. I think it’s the offer of being interviewed for O Magazine that triggered it. (Side note: I wrote an article about derby, the impact it’s had on my life and how at my age it’s important that I play so that I do not allow myself to become old. A freelance writer for the magazine saw that article and contacted me for a piece she’s working on about women who refuse to grow old.)

I felt a fraud because deep down – I was being an old lady. Sure… I paddle board regularly, but not in any way crossing the line of safety or going beyond my comfort zone. When I talk about my board some may envision me surfing the waves when nothing could have been further from the truth. All I did was paddle down smooth waters when the wind was mild.

Leo compared it to an old lady walking with a one pound bag in each hand thinking she’s “exercising”.

I felt shame from deep within. I paddled along like some may walk around the neighborhood wearing a comfy pair of slippers.

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This is the future me. It will come! (Image from Starboard catalog)

Until two days ago.

I hit those waves and surfed. What triggered this sudden change of heart? What pushed me to finally try? I think there is a series of answers and reasons… Prior to leaving San Diego I conquered my ultimate derby goal and challenge: to do a 2-legged jump. When I cleared a two foot high bar on the flat track I was high on adrenaline.

I have been constantly reminded by Leo that although roller derby is really cool, it’s an activity that excludes him. He eloquently expressed how he wanted surfing to be “our thing” and envisioned us surfing side by side. How romantic? And how could I ever say no to such a vision?

I took the exhilarating sensation of jumping on skates and transferred it to catching and riding a wave. Not only to perform that, but to have Leo there WITH me. Thoughts of him and I cheering each other on with talks about how we mastered tricks filled me.

Suddenly the desire to conquer the wave became bigger and more important than jumping on skates.

I no longer feel like a fraud when I think of my talk of boarding. I now have re-earned the right to wear my surf necklace and my surf wear. Each wave I attempted to catch – I caught. And as Leo added I caught them intentionally.

How cool is that? Way…

Now I can’t sleep. I’m still high on my accomplishment. Talking about high’s and low’s– I’ve applied for a job.

I know. Scary. I have that dangerous sensation of having enough self confidence in myself for at least being called in for an interview. Gurps. I can almost see that crazy robot with the dryer air exhaust arms waving about madly as he screams “Danger! Danger! Danger!”

I do not want to go down that road yet again.

All that matters is: I stood up and surfed on my very first attempt. What else could ever be as important as that? I surfed and I am not a fraud. It’s a beautiful thing. And speaking of beautiful things: my hair. It agrees with the surfing. It’s curly. It’s like a total beach head. Yeah, life is a beautiful thing. Getting called in for an interview would be sweet, but I can live without it.

For now… Surf’s up!

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23 thoughts on “*Fraud Alert*”

    1. Job is for the same organization where I worked in the Fall – total restructured team but haven’t heard back so I’m starting to think it’s a negative. But I’m so not letting it get to me (almost)

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  1. Love you. This is awesome. And you know what’s funny? Every time I thought of you with your paddle board, it was exactly what you described. Paddling in smooth waters and watching the sun go down. So, I never would have considered you a fraud to begin with. Now, you’re just even more of a badass than you were to begin with 😉

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    1. This morning was the first morning I held back from going (had too much stuff going, did you ever bake beer bread? it’s the shits I tell ya!) anyways and my friend told me afterwards that I totally missed out – whales not but 10 feet from her. I suck sometimes in the timing department!

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  2. I have to say don’t sell short the joys that paddling across a glassy surface can bring. If that’s your bliss (well – that and some rad derby jumps), then that’s your bliss.

    But you saw another bliss, and you lunged headlong into it, and it was a perfect moment. That’s inspiring. Now I’m all fired-up to go out and try something!

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      1. I can live with that, as long as it’s okay if the message is one of those “it could be worse” things, like comedian Kathleen Madigan’s “At least I’m not a crack dealer in curlers, running down the street.”

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    1. The first time I surfed was in Waikiki in 2005. A soft top longboard. I caught my first wave with a pic to prove it. Somehow, when I purchased the paddle board I stopped surfing. All last year I watched surfers from my boat and … I don’t know. It just didn’t pull me. I was really disappointed in myself. So this time I HAD to try it – that sensation of being a fraud is too icky for my taste. I was beyond thrilled to catch the waves! Do you surf? You must, with your profile image dontcha?

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      1. Mostly, I’m a specialized surfer, devoting my wave time to mastering pearling.
        I’m pretty damn good at it, but I feel I’ve so much more of that art to learn.

        My surf spot got hammered in Sandy, so I haven’t been out in seeral months. Hoping to rectify that soon.

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  3. You a fraud no way………………..you do mavoulous stuff that I wouldn’t dream of doing and you live such an interesting life so a fraud…………………..nope……………….

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  4. Surfing together is something my wife & I mused at doing one day too. Of course, she has to learn how to swim properly & we both need to learn how to surf…

    They’re all on the to-do list.

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    1. A long to-do list as I am sure. Swim properly? As long as she can tread and not drown. I don’t know how much of a swimmer you need to be.

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  5. Good on ya, woman! Jester’s right – there are so many people who will never try any of the things you’ve done. Be proud of your efforts and accomplishments.
    My most exhilarating experience ever is water skiing, as well as my favorite thing to do. It’s like flying on water, so I can only imagine what you feel like on a surfboard. Please tell us more about the O interview, too!

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  6. I’m hoping to try surfing for the first time this summer. I’ve always had a phobia of the sea, and like you I always try to push myself out of my comfort zone. I can’t wait!

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    1. Cool! You are so cool! If you were standing in front of me I’d stare at you wide-eyed and offer you chocolate (I don’t share much, so this is a huge compliment, trust me!)

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