When I was 9 years old I was obsessed.
Brink is a 1998 made for Disney movie that told the story of these “soul-skaters” who were incredible in-line roller-bladers. I watched this movie at least 10 times every summer, and then subsequently dreamt about all the ways that I too could become a “real roller-blader.” You see, “soul-skaters” was a group of friends that didn’t skate for money. They skated for fun. But they were real good.
As little kiddos, Lance and I would often play roller-hockey with our neighborhood friends which made for good practice. When we didn’t have a stick and puck in hand, I would do laps around our picture-perfect cul-de-sac and pretend that I was in an intensive training for my next roller-competition.
Kids have funny dreams like that.
But, I think those are the very dreams that keep us healthy. They keep us fresh – trying new adventures, committing to ideas, and pursuing even the small activities that keep us alive. Not in the physical sense, but in the soul-deep sense.
Life can be full of burdens (I realize that now, being 27, and no longer 9 years old) and so it’s a real good thing to find these nuggets of energy.
I spent 3 hours trying to find the perfect roller blades yesterday. I needed a small women’s size, with a brake in the back, for a decent price. Finally, I found the perfect pair, and I have had 2 rollerblading sessions in less than 12 hours. I need a lot more practice. My knees are creaky, my balance is off-kilter, and making a smooth turn is way harder than I remember. But, it’s fun. And it’s worth it. I’m nerdily pumped about the prospect of taking these blades out to Washington Park, or maybe to the Platte, and completing laps and laps of roller blade fun in the sunshine. Summer is upon us, and I’m grateful to know that I have something to stir energy that I’ve had within me since I was a little girl. The idea of rollerblading came back to life this last fall when I met a friend named Jesus (for real, this story is true) who was teaching hundreds of little kids in Kigali, Rwanda how to roller blade. I became enthusiastic and knew that I too, needed to roller blade again.
Occasionally, we find fragments of dreams or fun that when we dig far enough, we can bring back to life. Cheers to “soul-skating” and doing the things that keep us smiling, laughing, and wearing ridiculously-colored wrist, elbow, and knee guards. And a bright blue helmet to boot. If you are in the Denver area and see a girl barely holding her own on skates, you may have seen me. Come and join the fun.