Yes. I am on of the hundreds, maybe thousands of people who started skating during the pandemic. But I've been admiring roller skaters since childhood. There's just something so very smooth and magical about dancing on eight wheels, defying gravity! This just happened to be my time and chance to join in on the fun.
The fire was lit in me to skate again about a year ago, when I started seeing skate videos on Instagram's explore page. Good skaters make skating look easy and make anyone watching them feel that fun free-spirited feeling. Knowing I would be returning home, I made a list of things I wanted to do/learn once I got back. Roller Skating was number two. I'll talk about number one later.
Soon after, I found a Black Woman owned roller skate company, Moonlight Roller. At the time skates were only being released one by one and I had my eyes on a few pair. Even though I set reminders on my phone, I was always too late to secure skates in my size. Thankfully at the end of April, Moonlight Roller announced that their site would be fully stocked from then on! The next day I was able to purchase Moonboots in my size!
I got...The Prowler!
These were not my first choice, but they are so ME and fit my style. There are still two more pairs of Moonboots that I want and I already have a couple set-ups planned for them! So far I have changed my laces (to iridescent silver color) and my wheels (to Sure Grip Gravity wheels, blue glitter). Just two days ago I bought some more laces, wheels, and bearings cause I have a better set up in mind for these skates. I'm doing a lot but I want reflect my style even more.
As for the actual skating, I went from skating up and down the carpeted hallway to doing turns, transitions, stops, etc in the garage in one month. I have tried skating outside, but my fear of falling on uneven pavement (with an audience) has kept me from venturing out again. My ideal skating spot is an empty tennis court!
Speaking of fear of falling, I just have to accept that I will fall. The key is learning how to fall. And having proper safety gear! Because I have knee pads, elbow pads, and wrist guards I'm less afraid than I would be without them. Still there is some fear. For having skated everyday for more than a month, I haven't fallen enough. Fear keeps me from trying anything too crazy. But on the other hand, if I was fearless I might have some broken bones by now. Sometimes I compare my progress to other skaters, but my journey is mine alone. Last week I had to remind myself, that I am on my own journey. Although I'm recording, and it is helpful to keep track of my progress, the experience I feel in my body is what matters most.
Skating is a full body experience and helps me to be present. It allows me the opportunity to thank God and to be grateful for full mobility. Skating is more than a workout. Its a form of expression! The music and my wheels let me emote through each of my limbs.
Skating as also taught me self-love. When I watch my skate videos, I give myself permission to see my own beauty. That has not always been the case. I think the reason that I love dancing, yoga, and skating (full body activities) is because for so long, I was disconected from my body. For most of my life I struggled with what I now know to be body dismorphia, believing I was so much larger than I really was. These kinds of excercises help me see what's really there; to love what I see.
Over the years, before I started skating, I have been slowly building up body confidence. Skating has pushed me even further.
Every day of my skate journey is avaible in the archive section my instagram page for anyone who is not already aware. I know I complained about social media in my last post but, sharing my skate journey has brough me joy and I've been given a lot of encourage from my friends and family. I recently read a tumblr post that said:
"Start a new hobby. If you keeep practicing you'll be quite good in a few months or years. You'll have fun in the process and gain confidence in yourself too. It might even pull you from a dark place. It's never too late to start something new."
Cheers to roller skating for being the sunshine of my life! Until next post...or next skate!