After almost 5 months off the flat track I have returned to derby training with the new year. I was really hesitant about this, knowing I was going to be starting my PhD, and recalling the terrible commute, which, when you add it to the training timetable, means I'm not eating dinner until 10:30pm two nights a week. But in spite of all this I went back for the first training session of the year last week, and - surprise, surprise! - I enjoyed it.
I have to pass my Level 4 test (again!), which is scheduled for the end of the month. PRD have rolled into the new year with two sessions with Texas skater Smarty Pants, which has been a great opportunity for me to start over with the basics - crossovers, stops, etc. A great way to re-enter the sport, and I feel that the time off means perhaps I am a bit more of a blank canvas, and can take on board new techniques. I haven't gotten back into proper scrimmage yet, though the couple of scrimmage-based drills I've engaged in have felt so chaotic! Reminds me once again of the first time we scrimmaged, when it felt like I had NO IDEA of what was going on and I imagined I was completely all over the place. I also have to learn the new rule set, which has some pretty big changes, especially applying to penalties.
I'm honestly not sure what this year holds for me in terms of derby. I think last year the big mistake I made was placing too much emphasis on it, as an alternative avenue of satisfaction to work. Of course I didn't stop dedicating myself to my job, despite saying that I was going to (ha!), and what with a couple of injuries, derby did not provide the fulfillment I had hoped it would. I didn't have a lot in me last year, but hopefully this year will be different. At least, I'm doing everything in my power to make it so!