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.
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!