Roller Derby My New Life

Life can Suck

I just have to start out by saying that I have been so very blessed and I have an awesome family and friends that are always there for me.  But sometimes things occur that make you feel like life just sucks.

We have had our share of dissappointments, job and health issues and now, after living in our house since 1996 we get flooded.  We are so very lucky that it was an inch of water on our lowest level of a split level house.  The reality of having to suck up the water, clean and throw out endless piles of junk is a daunting task.  Just one more thing on the list of challenges we have faced since September of last year.

It is so petty to complain, and feels childish and not relevant but it is a natural part of human nature.  I allow myself to go through these emotions and anxieties so I can move forward and be thankful for all that I have.  Dealing with an anxiety disorder and bouts of depression, I have learned that it is normal to go through difficult times and that they do not have to destroy you.  Doing this is one of my outlets, that I hope helps others as well as helping me to navigate these trying times.

With so many things happening in this world today and so many people not able to deal with their mental health issues, I feel I have to speak out with my own struggles.  There is so much help out there for anyone who will seek it out.  Everyday brings you a new chance to move forward, to get help and to feel better. For some unfathomable reason we have been taught that asking for help makes you weak and pathetic, but in reality it takes immense strength to recognize you need help and the courage to ask for it. 

How well do you know your closest friends, do you know the struggles they go through or are you only concerned with what you get out of the relationship?  We so easily pass judgement and worry about ourselves so much we forget to have concern for our friends and family.  When was the last time you asked someone if they ok and waited or pressed for the real answer?  When was the last time you shared your struggle with someone that cares?  I know I have failed at this many times and I resolve to be and do better.  What will you do?

My daughter and son in law are going thru a medical crisis and they are doing so well, accepting help because it takes a village to make
it thru a crisis.  I am so very proud of them and their little family.  I am so blessed to be able to help out and just be there for them when needed.  It has helped me overcome some of my own struggles just to see their strength.  I believe I am here to help others and let others help me.  I sincerely hope that this is a help to someone out there that needs it.

God Bless
Kool

Roller Derby My New Life

Faith vs Fear

So very much has happened since my last post.  My family is the single most important thing in my life and we found out that our son-in-law Scott was diagnosed with Germinona. Germinoma is the name for about a dozen types of tumors that arise in the pineal gland area of the brain. Pineal tumor  typically experience a buildup of fluid within the brain, causing headaches, nausea and impaired vision.  He has completed Chemo and will be getting radiation.

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Our daughter, Melinda, has worked hard to keep up with Katelynn (4) and Justin (1), the house, work, going back and forth to the medical center for treatments and has just been a super woman.  This week we got the good news that the tumor has shrunk very small and an end to Chemo.  This family has had undying faith amid the overwhelming fear.

She has had support from amazing family members and friends because it truly takes a village to keep things going when your world has been turned upside down.  Even though we have good news the bills are still coming and even with insurance the cost of the treatments are daunting.  But she and her little family have kept the faith, and moving through the crisis with grace, love and lots of support.

This is not the only medical crisis to come to my family and it is so overwhelming at times to deal with just the daily things, let alone the many Drs, bills and paperwork.  So far this years has been a test of faith and perseverance.  I was laid off, early this year, along with the medical issues in my family and when I did go back to work I felt guilty because I could and I found a job.

I don’t know the reason for the hardships we have endured since this time last year, but I still believe that beyond this will be many good things to come.  It may be in a manner in which we did not expect but, there is still work to be done.  The fear will not overtake us and this too shall pass.

Roller Derby My New Life

The Journey

Today I reflect on the time I had with my Dad who is now in heaven watching over us.  I was so very lucky to have a strong and loving man in my life.  He taught me things that I didn’t even know I had learned until years later.  I was also spoiled and very much loved at the same time.  My children have a strong influence with my husband and I am thankful to have him in my life as well. This journey of life would not be the same without him.

I am so very thankful for everything that I have had in this life and everything that is come.  The journey has been hard at times, we have faced many difficulties and set backs and disappointments but we are still here by the grace of God.  Some of the challenges are hard to accept and can be a daily struggle but I think about my grand children and am so lucky in so many other ways.  My family and my chosen family are the most important thing in my life, all the noise that surrounds us is insignificant and I have learned to focus my attention on the blessings.

We got to see our kids minus one who we hope to be reunited with one day, and the grands.  I live for the look in my husbands eyes when he sees the grandchildren.  It fills my heart with such love and joy.  We spent most of the time tag teaming them and following the toddler around the house that is not toddler proof!  Watching cartoon movies and planning a trip soon to see more family and celebrate some milestone birthdays.

Today we rest and get ready for the week coming up.  Today I remember my dad, celebrate my husband, son in law, brother and all the dads out there doing what they do.

Reflection is part of the journey of life and I love to spend some time doing this, meditating and thanking God for all I have been given.  HAPPY FATHER’S DAY to all!  Be blessed and enjoy your day!

Until next time

Kool

Roller Derby My New Life

Life Changes

Oh where to begin, I worked for the same company for 34 years. That however never mattered when it came down to the company “cutting costs”. I grew up in a time when companies and employees had an actual relationship, loyalty on both sides. Today we live in a world of ever changing jobs.

Now I have the opportunity to look for work, or pursue early retirement. It was unexpected and sudden but just another aspect of the changing economy. A part of me wanted to retire from the company I spent my whole career at but I have had that taken away. Accpeting another major life changing event can be intimidateing and scary but I am ready to embrace this new challenge, and see where things go from here.

Taking some time to look at where I am and where I want to go is a luxery that I have not been able to do. I was embracing change at work all the time, but this is very different. Not having a routine and trying to figure out a routine that I want to establish is challenging. So much of my time was dictated by my job and the hours I worked, now I have all this time and not a clue what to do with it.

I am so fortunate to have a good package that allows me to take my time and look at different things that I can pursue. Thankfully, I still have 2 jobs to keep up with for my Roller Derby Team which does help me schedule my time. And I admit that I have had trouble with motivation, from a bit of depression and missing the people I worked with and just plain missing the routine of going to work every day.

I am doing a lot of thinking, reflecting and meditating. I have skills and I am still very capable of contributing and I like the money I make, but I also want to enjoy my grand children. Help out my children and husband and maybe do something I never thought of doing before. How cool would that be, something new and scary. Being an accountant by trade, I am ultra concervative and taking chances and risk are totally foriegn to me so that will take some thought and overcoming fear of failure and success.

I sort of knew this would be like going through the stages of grief but it was surprising to me how much it felt like grieving. Loosing my father in law and my dad were the closest people to me and this has been almost as difficult. I honestly don’t miss the work, I am more agitated that the decision was not mine to make. Not taking it personal is the hardest thing I have had to accept. It is almost like I need someone to blame, not an entitiy or circumstances or the economy. It is disconcerting to realize that you are totally replaceable.

I have also been on the other side of these circumstances. I have survived countless layoffs over all the years that I have worked so I am thankful that it came at time when it is not hardship and I can still pay my bills. In the end all will be provided for and that is not a worry so, my short term goal is to embrace the time off, do things I said I would do if I didn’t have to work and live life to the fullest!!

Peace Out!
Kool

Roller Derby My New Life

Disappointment

Disappointments are a fact of life.  You will have them, everyone has them, everyone hates them.  So what do you do about them?  I am reminded of this watching my Granddaughter Katelynn, navigate her way through seemingly constant disappointments.  Everything from not getting the food she wanted to Nana and Gramps leaving, to being told no for good reasons.  Some of us can shake them off, learn from them and move forward.  Others, throw fits, get down on themselves and get stuck in rut.  Which of these are you?  Be honest.  I am throw a fit, hate the world and everyone in it kind.  At least I was most of my life.

Becoming an adult and having to do adult things really sucked, but I was determined to be self sufficient.  I had to learn how to deal the disappointments of life.  However, because I hated so much to be disappointed, it stopped me from doing things or pursuing things that I otherwise may have succeeded at.  When I finally got to the root of this it all came down to fear.  I was afraid of succeeding as much as failing maybe more so.

At least as a grandmother, I can hopefully help my grandchildren navigate this aspect of life better than I did, although Gramps is the best at it and he knows how to do that.  As for me, sadly Roller Derby taught me more about this than I was willing to learn through other experiences in life.  But, I am so very glad that I did figure it out and in the process found something that I am completely passionate about.  I love to put my knowledge and learning out there for others to learn from and to be a part of something that I never thought I would be.

To explain this, at the age of 5 I lost the hearing in my left ear.  I do not currently remember what it was like to hear with both ears, but I do know how much I do not hear give this handicap.  In school when I tried to play sports, I could not hear the players, coaches or anyone trying to give me instruction during the heat of the game.  The background noise would drown out any voices to the point that I only heard a bunch of garbled noise.  Needless to say, I did not do well at any sport I tried.  I was not be able to find a way to compensate for my hearing loss, and therefore I stopped trying to play sports.

This was also a time when girls were not encouraged to play competitive sports, unless it was tennis or something like that, so I had noone to encourage me to keep trying and find a way around the handicap.  So this became my excuse for not participating.  It was a difficult thing to deal with as a young child and as an adult. (Imagine large meetings and trying to hear everyone on the wrong side of me talk).

I did eventually learn to tell people about my hearing difficulty and unlike in schoool most are genuinely willing to accomodate this problem. I never realized that it could be this way. I was afraid of being ridiculed or made fun of or laughed at. The type of damage I have cannot be helped by hearing aids, so it was up to me to figure out how to best deal with this. I have learned much and I greatly appreciate the Refs in Roller Derby that make sure I see them when I have a penalty and are totally not judgemental. It is better to let someone know then to pretend. Remember you are always who you are and it is ok to be who you are!!

Lots of derby love and hip checks to all!

Roller Derby My New Life

Training

So the year is off to an awesome start!  Our team trainers have been working hard to plan our practices and help everyone get back into shape.  And wow after practice I am so sore from the off skate portion, I am walking very slowly!  It is awesome though because I have been off for so long and had a hard time finding the motivation to work on my own.  I know I am not the only one.  Some people get to the gym and do their workouts and stick to it.  I am not one of those people.  I will go to every single practice and some extra training but actually going to a gym is very sporadic for me.

A full-time job, grown up responsibilities and grandchildren make it impossible for me to be committed like that.  I do have a goal to get better at this and be more consistent with my other workouts.  I would like to add maybe once a week yoga, so now I have to figure out how to make myself leave my desk at lunch.

On the good side, I have been able to up my level by paying attention to my recovery from my workouts.  Heavy exercise breaks downs your muscles and recovery builds them up.  When I started roller derby, I was going once a week and spending the next 2 days on the couch in pain from muscle soreness.  Next I started skating twice a week.  Not quite as bad as I was getting more workouts but still having a problem with energy after.  That is not to say that I didn’t feel better, it was just I felt old and unable to keep up.  It took my body longer to recover from intense training.

I was introduced to AdvoCare and Spark after complaining to someone that I just could not go all out in 2 hour practices.  This kind person gave me a Spark and introduced me to the world of athletic nutrition.

Because I am a closet nerd, I had to study this and do my research and I found that I was neglecting my nutrition and my recovery.  I now have a regimen for before, during and after our training.  It has made a world of difference in how I feel, and most importantly, how I perform.  I strive to put the best products in my body and my research has led me to invest solely in the AdvoCare products.  That doesn’t mean there isn’t good alternatives but I also like the company.

Here are things that you should be paying attention to, especially as you get older:

  1. Rest – This is the most important thing you can do for your body and your mind. I believe in 8 hours of good sleep and I relax and rest watching some tv, reading and meditation.
  2. Nutrition and Hydration – I was a junk food junkie, even though I like food that is good for you, I hate to cook and I am lazy, just ask Mr. Kool.  I did long ago stop drinking soda’s and now I drink water, coffee and water.  Coffee is my vice I won’t give up.  I don’t need it as I use Spark for energy and mental focus but I like it so I drink it!  As for nutrition, I have embarked on setting myself up for a lean and healthy retirement.  Everything we do as young’uns will catch up with you. (the 24 Day Challenge teaches you how to eat properly)
  3. Cool down and stretches – This is awesome for helping your body to recover from strenuous activity.  We don’t do enough of this, that reminds me to bring this up in the next training meeting!
  4. Massage – These feel awesome and help put you into a good relaxed mood.  Take advantage!

Currently using AdvoCare products, this is my regimen;

Pre-Practice – I eat a meal that will fuel me without making me sick early enough to not be full at practice.  I take 02 Gold, Catalyst, and muscle fuel with a little bit of spark or rehydrate.  Then I drink plenty of water.

During – Currently have been getting by with drinking plenty of water, during games I would drink rehydrate mixed with biocharge and plain water

After Practice – depending on how late it is, I have a Pro20 and nighttime recovery, or post workout shake and nighttime recovery.

I still feel the soreness from hard workouts but I can get up at 5am after a practice that lasts until 11 and still function.  I use a foam roller to roll out the kinks the next night and I am ready for more!  Listen to your body, it will tell you what you need. Mental training is just as important so don’t neglect your mental health either!

I was long winded this time around, thanks for staying with it and please feel free to offer me feedback or let me know if you like what you read

Until next time

Hip Checks and chest bumps!

Roller Derby My New Life

Back on the Track

Happy New Year!  I have finally returned to the track and low and behold not just as a skater but as our Rose Bud Trainer (what we named our Fresh Meat).  Since this is a new year with new trainers and after a break we have gone back to basics.  This means that I have had the opportunity to run basic skills training for our league.  So far it has been a blast for me, and I hope for everyone else too.

I spent my recovery from surgery reading, researching and learning everything I could about roller derby, drills, coaching and I am putting all that to work on the track.  I have specific goals for myself this year and for our team.  We are now a WFTDA Apprentice League and that is a game changer for us.  We have more rules to follow and we hope to become full WFTDA league in the future.

That being said, I plan to to do some serious weight lifting and off the track work outs.  I want to improve my agility skills and up my endurance.  Since I will be planning practices and such when we have new skaters join us I have a plan in writing that I will hold myself accountable to.  I would like to see everyone on our team write down their goals and share them so we can help each other meet and exceed these goals. 

Running a team and league takes every single person to do some part and be willing to learn all aspects of the game from NSO to reffereeing.  The more you learn about all the pieces the better you will be as a player.  I also encourage everyone to take advantage of other training opportunities such as speed, and open scrimages.  The more you play, the better you get and the more you learn.

I have been so blessed to get to skate with some truly awesome people and look forward to a great year of learning and playing.  Another goal is to write my blog more often this year.  I am working on all aspects of my life.  Until next time, skate hard and learn things!