I’ve never been particularly sporty or fit. Okay, okay, so I was quite unfit actually. Back at high school, I was dropped off, and picked up from, school every day. I did not walk anywhere. We had a very car-centric culture, where every bit of travelling was done by car (public transport you say? I had never been in a bus!).
Those who know me know I had a pretty sheltered life. The result was, I was very unfit and this together with my generally skinny frame did go one bit towards making any sort of athlete or sports woman out of me.
The first time I really walked around for any significant amount of time was for Orientation Day at university. Oh my, that was a killer! When I reached home at the end of the day, my legs and feet were screaming at every step. I had never walked so much in my life before.
University, then, was a step up in terms of fitness. When I moved to O’Rorke, the Hall of Residence, I joined the gym and even went consistently for some time but that only lasted for a few months (guilty look).
Since then, I have been trying (with varying degrees of success) to get healthier and attain some resemblance of fitness. But it’s not as easily done!
So generally I was plain bad at sport. I had no strength, no stamina, no speed (still don’t). Yeah, I was the girl in the team that runs away from the soccer ball instead of going towards it. Guilty as charged.
Through some coincidence, which I don’t remember now, I decided to try squash a while back. The first time I totally failed. But I am good at learning. I like learning. And now I had found something that I found I seemed to enjoy and that I might not totally suck at.
I played a few times more and each time I got better. I began to really like squash. It was energetic, fun and above all it was something that I could actually play!
Then I moved out of the Hall of Residence. I didn’t play squash again. For years. I kept the squash ball I had, hoping to play again. A part of me said I would be horrible at it, another part said I won’t know until I try.
Today, I tried it again. I booked the squash court. I had butterflies in my tummy as the time came closer. I got worried that I would totally fail, or worse that people wil be watching.
My lovely Maxi accompanied me there. He patiently waited while I tried to hit the ball and missed again and again. He tried to show me how to serve the ball. I listened. I tried. I missed again. I tried again. I learnt. I got better. I missed less shots.
I remembered again how much I loved the game. Running, focusing on the ball, feeling the power of in my hands, feeling the movements of my body. It was awesome!
Maybe next time I will get better, and learn more, and grow with each new experience.