Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Facing fear head on!

Greetings on a Fine Wednesday!

Ice. Fear. Ice. Fear. Ice. Fear. Ice. Fear. Ice. Fear. Ice. Fear.

By now you might be getting the idea that I fear ice. You all know that Minnesota is known for the amount of snow, but also the amount of ice that we get. My fear of ice is deeply rooted in two events. The first incident occurred in January 2001. I was walking out to the barn at our hobby farm on a balmy 32-degree day. It was so warm I was not paying attention. At the junction of the sidewalk and gravel driveway I slipped and hard, fell right on the back of my head, suffering a pretty major concussion and head injury. The consequence to that event is I became a migraine sufferer (mostly under control now). I still have moments of vertigo. But, the enduring problem is that I am very sensitive to light and sound. Very. I had to give up being a (amateur) cellist with the Mankato Symphony Orchestra, because I could not handle the brass section in my rear (sorry Alan). On a side note: I plan to pick it up again and play in some small ensembles, if my brain can handle it, this year while I am on leave. The second incident occurred in February of 2008 when I slipped again on some ice while taking my college students to an environmental learning center on the North Shore of Lake Superior. I was looking at their shenanigans on the ropes course and cheering them on. Once again not paying attention to where I was walking. The result of that slip was a broken leg that now sports some pins and screws. So, fear of ice. That is definitely true of me.

This week began my year long sabbatical (sorry, don't mean to rub it in!) and one of my goals is to push myself beyond my comfort zone and to conquer some of my deep seated fears. I am facing my fear by getting out on the ice and ice SKATING!!! Well, slight correction: learning to ice skate. I bought a pair of hockey skates a few years back, which I wobbled into a few times on the ice. But not now. I am going to learn to skate!

Guess what is helping me??? A stroller. Okay. Laugh all you want. But, here is the deal: I am no spring chick and I don't want to crack my head or break another bone. The stroller gives me a way, with support, to find my skating legs and feet (plus a grandbaby can sit in it and rest their tired skating legs). In the Netherlands (where hubby hales from) the little Dutchies use a small chair which they push around the ice as they learn. So, that is where my idea came from I am taking baby steps, though. Every time I am out there I have to really work my left leg (the one I broke) because it just does not want to skate (has a mind of its own you see). But I am doing it. I am gliding some on the ice. Some. Fifteen-twenty minutes at a time. I want to try to get out on the ice 5/7 days. Minnesota has many winter perks. One of them is that almost every city park has an outdoor ice rink for recreational skaters and a rink for the hockey crowd. I intend to use that ice.



Back to my journey and skating: Many of you have posted about the other rewards of your own journey to better health such as finding out more about why you eat, pushing yourself more, etc. It is the same with me. My decision to get healthy and fit has permeated in to many other facets of my life, especially the physical. There are so many things I want to try. Just liken many of you. For me, I enjoy the outdoors (no secret there) and want to indulge myself in as many different outdoor experiences as possible. Ice is one of them. It is time to face my fear and conquer it. I am doing it and life never felt better. How about you: what fears have you faced or conquered lately?

TTFN and stay strong my friends. Michele

23 comments:

  1. YAY, good luck skating!!! Helmet?

    I, too, fear ice. Hubby and I slid off a highway at 55 one time. Fear of God, let me tell you. I still whiteknuckle whenever we drive in any different weather conditions.

    Best of luck conquering your fear!

    Polar's Mom
    www.polarspage.blogspot.com

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  2. What a great story and good luck with the skating. Keep us posted (and amused maybe??) with pics.

    You'll readily identify with my story since it also involves the love of the outdoors. I am terrified of snakes also resulting (most likely) from an incident in childhood. The phobia has interfered with my love of hiking and I finally decided enough was enough. I am not over the phobia by any means, but I have forced myself to take steps to make it manageable. So now I no longer refuse to hike during snake season, my hiking "buds" all just know their job is to make sure I don't step on a snake.

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  3. I never knew that you had been through such a traumatic event! Im glad that you are facing your fears!! Kudos to you!!

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  4. Look at you all cute and ready to skate!!!

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  5. Skating! How cool is that? No pun intended.

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  6. You amaze me!! I love your attitude!! Also, you are cute as a button in your winter coat!!!

    Have fun my friend!!!

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  7. Skating sounds like a great way to get over your fear of ice. :D Enjoy learning to skate. It is so much fun. And great exercise, too.

    I could never skate on hockey skates. Figure skates, yes. Hockey skates? Forget about it. lol One of the things I want to do, again when I get enough weight off is to skate. I miss it.

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  8. Okay, THAT is inspirational. Well, and a warning to us too, to watch that ice!!

    Be sure to keep us updated on your progress, Michele - on how you are coming along in your skating abilities. Good thing those Minnesota winters last through June, eh? :D

    xx

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  9. I conquered my fear of blogging!
    I am really very shy.

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  10. I just took a spill on the North Dakota ice today. It gave me no more cushion than your Minnesota ice gave you. I was lucky though and walked away with just a bruised knee and a bruised ego. Way to go on the skating! Oh for fun, and to get to do it with your grandbabies, what great memories you will all have.

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  11. Skating is something I need to try someday, putting on the list

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  12. Thats fantastic!!! Strollers, chairs, pylons, husbands....doesn't matter what you hold on to, you got out and did it!! Congrats! Skate on!!!

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  13. One year i fell 6 times on ice and always landed on my right knee! Took forever to heal :( Now i wear yaktrax :)
    Good for you on going skating that is something i never learned.

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  14. I'm scared of ice too and falling. I figure the bigger they are...(you know the rest). Good for you Michele. Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway.

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  15. Oh come on now, you carried that grudge against the brass long before that, right. Admit it. Admit it!

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  16. Fear -Ice -Fear - Ice....
    when I first re-read that I thought it said
    "Fire and Ice" like the old Pat Benatar song!
    Walking is a battlefield!

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  17. First OUCH!!! Minnesota, we do have the snow and ice. I had an time once where Ziata (our house) threw me off into a pile of ice and busted up my knee (the one I had already busted up playing volleyball in high school). I use to love ice-skating, in fact when we were with Disney on Ice the kids we were guarding tried to teach me some ice-skating tips. After a few to many falls (not gracious ones either) I sorta gave it up. Might have to think about trying again, you are sure inspiring.
    I fear lots of people, I find it really hard to go to the gym and work out when there is more then one and you know a gym there's always 10 or more. I'm working on that. I just leave my music on and try to just zone out and it helps. At least until I find someone I can talk to.
    Take care Michele, this comment is a bit long but I'm good at writing, just not talking face to face.
    Have a great and blessed day today. It's snowing up here this morning.

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  18. Our house? No it's horse....not a house. Wish I had seen that before I submitted my comment. Oh well, I'm not perfect.
    Take care.

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  19. You look great! And skinny even in a big winter coat. Gave you an award today -- apologies if you've done this one before.
    http://livinginonederland.blogspot.com/2011/01/and-4-3-2-1-roll-camera.html

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  20. I'm so proud of you! Keep workin' at it sistah!

    That sleep study was a huge fear for me. Now I've done it twice and survived. Mostly.

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  21. Wow. I am so inspired by you. And, you are so beautiful in that picture, LOVE, LOVE, LOVE IT!! :) I have black hockey skates, too. Do you find your feet hurt? I tried skating last year and the bottoms of my feet hurt sooo bad, I had to stop. My brother said, that's just how it is and he remembers when he played hockey, the first few practices they were so sore till he got his skating feet back. Anyway, I am inspired by you. I have conquered many fears in the last year and continue to hurl myself out of my comfort zone. It's quite satisfying! Have fun! (Just LOVE how you are standing there... ON THE ICE... showing no fear, not letting it see you sweat... ) ;) Janelle

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  22. You're so dang cute in your red coat and skates! I want to learn too! Me too me too me too!

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