As someone that is easily broken and bruised, I chose to take 6 weeks off skating before my wedding.  I’m still seeing the physio for an injury from my last champs game, and I really didn’t want to walk down the aisle with a cast or crutches. Physio’s orders made my scheduled break compulsory rather than a choice.

Taking time off meant I’d miss sooooo much training and some games.

I tried to figure out how I could do it all. I made plans to attend off skates when I could to help out, all to ensure I didn’t fall behind and then have no idea what’s going on within the team. Sounds great in theory; I worked out dates and attendance points, YES I had a great plan... I can do it all… I thought.

I religiously completed the physio that was set, I kept up with my fitness by going swimming (I hate swimming) and after 3 weeks of physio I could ride my bike comfortably again.

As my wedding grew closer, I started running out of time.

Fast-forward now to 6 weeks before the big day. I have meetings coming out of my ears with photographers, flowers, food, dress, venue, gym, beauty treatments (obviously important) and with work on top I quickly discovered that my plan was not going to work.

I can’t do it all.  

I tried to re-plan and figure out how much time I can give to each section of my life.  I became in full demand when it came down to wedding planning and had to fit in time for not 1 but 2 hen parties. Roller Derby had taken a back seat.  

Every training day I would think “ohhh I should be at training”, however I was usually visiting parents or friends or sleeping ha ha and then the guilt would kick in. I began to feel distant from my team and my mental health deteriorated a little. I felt as though my fitness had gone even though I continued to cycle and felt that my bodyshape felt foreign to me. I felt wobbly and when I looked at myself my confidence dropped to the floor. The scales were kind to me but my brain was not.

I have been in this situation before when I broke my ankle and again, I didn’t know what to do to kickstart my brain into being myself again.  

I spoke to my partner and he also was at a loss. He said all the right things and still to this day thinks I look fabulous but as you all may know when you are in a certain frame of mind words can not help.  

I decided to go to training off skates to see if this would help. I messaged the team and said I was coming. It took courage as I had been MIA for 4 weeks. I thought “what if I don’t know what they are doing or if I am in the way” and “what if they don’t like me now for having time off or I get ignored”  

I pushed those thoughts aside and attended... I got greeted with a warm welcome and was asked how I was and how the wedding planning was going. I thought to myself “how silly am I to think I would not be welcome “what a bloody fool I was.

I understood all the drills and even made suggestions. Everyone was wonderful. I left feeling great and I look forward to becoming a full-time skater again. I have accepted that this will happen after my honeymoon and I know I will be welcomed back with open arms and warm smiles.  

Here comes the soppy bit… I might have missed some training but I went on to have the wedding day of my dreams and married the love of my life. The day couldn’t have gone better, I felt wonderful in my dress and love was in the air. The weather was on my side and I became a Mrs.   

I guess so many people have events in life that completely throw a spanner into  the works and the usual planning of life. I know I can overcome my anxieties and will always be stronger than I ever thought.

If I can take anything from this time off skates it would be that there is a life beyond roller derby (even if life is better with it!)

See you all on the track soon.