When I was young, I fell in love with competitive figure skating. The ice was my second home, and every minute I spent on it was pure bliss. By the time I was ten, I had practices four times a week and several competitions a year. Unfortunately, my path to success did not leave me unscathed. I had many falls and accidents over the years, and getting back up was almost never easy. The worst accident occurred when I was first starting to skate. I was four years old, and it led to my parents almost taking me off of the ice forever.
As my skate hits the ice, the soft crush of the blade against the ice is the only noise resonating through my brain. I feel a sense of belonging, confidence and freedom to express all the emotions I cannot find any other way to show. It may take a few weeks to learn a basic skill, and maybe even months to learn something complex, but the satisfaction that comes from finally landing something new is like no other. I feel the same satisfaction from the undergraduate biology courses I have taken. There are some concepts that are easy to grasp, while others take a while to learn. Being a part of a lab, I spent many of the first few weeks reading articles and feeling frustrated that I was not actively working on anything. But, once I started to work on experiments, everything I read seemed to come together and put the work into perspective. There are days in my classes when I think this is too difficult for me and do not think it is even possible to learn this much information, but being a part of the lab, I learned to push past the frustration and keep myself determined to keep going. And now, I enjoy the complexity of science, and enjoy figuring out something new, because there is no greater satisfaction.
From the age of three, my life was nothing but Hockey. With a father who was a hockey player and a brother 3 years older already playing hockey, it was clear which sport I was going to get into. Once I started walking, my parents put me on the ice to learn the game of hockey. I instantly fell in love and I have continued playing to this day. Once it came time to play high school hockey, it all got serious. I was a freshman on the varsity team with my brother, who was a senior at the time. This was nothing but an emotional year for me, it was my first year in high school and my last year to play on a team with my brother. Once my brother graduated, he decided to go onto Juniors hockey, which is what I would do once I graduated. By the time I graduated high school, my brother would exceed the age limit for juniors hockey, so
“That’s so cute!” It is a disgusting phrase to hear as an athlete, to have all your dreams and desires wrapped up and defined as “cute”. No one says this to wrestlers or runners or swimmers. Yet it is a common reaction to the phrase, “I’m a figure skater”. It is as if all the frustration and falls and tears are ignored. No one realizes how much the act of being a figure skater has ingrained itself in my day to day life - that sometimes destructive drive to achieve, the need for perfection because it is the only acceptable outcome. Still, I am constantly summed up or written off as a girl with a “cute” hobby. Skating is not another trife hobby. Figure skating has become a repetitive gruel of day in-day out passion. To me, there is nothing “cute”
I have been playing ice hockey since I was seven years old. By the age of ten, I was committed to the sport, I was willing to do anything to make it to the top. Back when I was eight years old, I suffered a severe concussion and thought I was going to be out of hockey for at least a year. As a way of getting back on the ice quicker, I changed positions and became a goalie. My nine year old season was my first time to experience being a goaltender. I took to the position very well and really enjoyed my new role. The next season, I was good enough to be offered a position as the goalie for a local travel team. I immediately loved the intensity of the higher level competition and traveling to tournaments. I was hooked and could not get enough. As my friends were playing lots of sports, trying to figure out what they were good at, there was no hesitation in me; I was an ice hockey goaltender.
My team won 3 out of 4 hockey games in my hockey tournament. It was the championship game for a banner and a medal. We were playing the Ice Dogs who we had originally beaten 3-1. Over the summer we did so much dry land on the track and my dad said it will all pay off today. I stepped on the ice for warm ups and the ice felt smooth under my skates. I was prepared for a hard hockey game.
The service I did was volunteering at the Robin Lee Figure skating competition. The job I took on was being ice monitor. I sat near the door to the ice rink and checked people in. I made sure people were on time for their practice time or for their event. I was in charge of informing people where they had to be at what time. I had to keep track of what was happening because I had to know if they were ahead or on time or even late. I was in charge of all these little things that I had to pay attention to. I was also in charge of helping if someone got hurt on or off the ice.
It all started at 2, when my father bought me skates, and made a skating rink in my backyard. Then, I got into the sport, which at 6, I was nationally known, and people were lining up for autographs at 10, had interviews for magazines at 15, 17 he was in the WHA, then the NHL the year later. It was fast, how I moved through my life, but I couldn’t think of a life different life like it.
I want to tell you a little bit about my background that can give you a better understanding of me as a person. As a young kid, I grew up on a pair of skates. Me and my brother couldn’t wait until friday night when my dad would take us the the rink and let us skate around. When we were finally old enough to join a hockey team that was the beginning of a life pacion that would continue to this day. Know I am greatly privileged to play on my high school hockey team, and in 10th grade our team actually won state.
As a former gymnast, cheerleading was never something I planned on doing. In the gymnastics world, cheer was hated. Gymnasts everywhere claimed that cheerleading “stole” tumbling from us. So when I made the Junior Varsity team my freshman year, I expected the worst. Looking back, cheer has taught me more life lessons in the past four years than gymnastics ever did in the ten years I was a gymnast.
A few weeks later I found myself at my very first hockey practice the seat to my car car was heating up because of my body temperature was so hot. I was so nervous I had to meet 15 new people. Well if that is not nerve racking you must not be huma. This all started at my kitchen table, my dad asked me if I want to pursue my hockey career. You already know the answer to that question it was a YES. My dad said that if I wanted to pursue my hockey dream than I would have to play for a better hockey team. Than, we went to go scout a hockey team out in syracuse and we like them they skated fast, they were moving at such a fast past and I liked that. So we met the head coach and hear what he had to say us. He told us when tryouts were and where they took place. Sooner or later I found my riding in the car to tryout the car ride to syracuse was so long and scary, in my head were a couple of thoughts like “What if someone is better than me and will take my spot”. I put those thoughts aside and started focusing on what I had to do to make the team. My mother and I started play pump up music to get me ready for tryouts. In the car I realized I wanted to play hockey for a
Entering that room, nothing could have prepared me for what was to come. As I sat there my heart dropped when I heard the words, "you made the team", "you are not going to play much", and "if you tryout next year you will not make the team". I was in such a daze as I reemerged from the room. It was as if the wind had been knocked out of me and I was having trouble understanding what had just happened. I had never felt disappointment like I did in that moment in my entire life. Soccer had been the only sport I knew for 8 years. Change had always been a struggle for me since I was little so I was aware that trying a new sport was going to be difficult. Field hockey captains practices were held during the summer, so I decided to go to one and
When I was a freshman in high school, I tried out for the Minnesota High Performance Hockey Team. I was so excited that I got invited to try out because I knew this is where all of the best players in the state came together to play hockey. After the tryout process, I anxiously awaited the news of whether or not I made the team. A couple days later, I got the tryout results. I was devastated that I did not make the team. After I thinking about it for a few days, I decided that I was going to work extremely hard and make the team the next year. I put forth my best effort at all of my different practices, and put in extra time outside of practice to work towards my goal. Sophomore year tryouts came, and once again, I was determined to make the
My brain goes silent. I forget my problems, my issues, my struggles, and everything that makes me feel dead inside. Nothing gives me more hope and happiness, then running on floor to hanging on a bar. From the darkness inside comes a light that feels like an eternal flame that can never be extinguished. Nothing can stop me from feeling more alive. Starting gymnastics has been the best decision I have ever made and has made me the person I am today. With every move, every skill, and every moment, gymnastics makes me feel alive.
The cold has a smell. Now I realize that this idea sounds downright outrageous… Someone would have to be extremely gullible to believe that statement. How can a feeling smell? Well my dear friends ask any figure skater and their definite answer would be “YES!!!”. When a skater truly connects with the ice everything right in the world goes left. Why figure skaters can defy gravity, and walk on (frozen) water! Skating is an art form. It requires dedication, patience, effort, and most importantly time. Time is honestly the most important element to a great skater. Now by no means am I a great skater. There are few who can claim the title of great. I am however working towards becoming a great skater, and have had enough interaction with great