My Way Out
There’s this song that has expressed my relationship with skating since I first put skates on my feet over 10 years ago.
My Way Out – David Usher
Roller derby was by far not the first obsession I had with skates.
First it was short-track, and this man:
I’ve written endlessly on how much Apolo Ohno has influenced my life and my training as a skater even to this day, and I can only hope to build even just a small percent of myself as focused and disciplined as he is as an athlete.
Knowing the reality of my life and understanding that skating short-track would never come to fruition, I strapped on a pair of rollerblades and skated anywhere and everywhere. I skated all over Calgary, used skates to commute to work, to the gym.. Skating was all the things to me. I even accumulated a small collection of road rash scars from my escapades on rollerblades..
… life sucks? skate.
… need to think? skate.
….. everything is AWESOME? skate.
I’ve lived my life on skates for as long as I can remember, and unfortunately every time I did put on a pair of skates.. it was always too late to make a competitive difference in my life. I never got to be that short-track skater, I never got to skate inline speed skating races or aggressive inline..
… and that’s where roller derby was the difference.
Roller derby afforded me the opportunity to finally bring out the athlete hiding in me, the person that I’ve wanted to become since I laid eyes on that one short track race in 2002. It got me to places that I had never heard of, met amazing and fantastic people and helped me cross off a big thing on my bucket list which was to try out for a national team.
I didn’t make the team, but hey… I now have another goal which I work towards every day.
Skating was no longer just the escape, it has become my life. A life that I need no escapes from, where I can skate as fast and as hard as I can with a shit-eating grin on my face, knowing that yes… I am free.
This is my way out, and it’s fantastic.