Monday, September 20, 2010

Sculpting ...

The term has so many meanings. Think about it. It could refer to artwork, which I am sure is what comes to mind the minute you read that on my page. It could refer to body building. It could be a metaphor for teaching young minds... I could come up with a innumerable other thoughts about the meaning of this particular verb.

I have spent the past few weeks reframing my coaching role. It has been an interesting journey. Last year, by the end of the season, I had grown so exhausted of the stress that I gave up all of it, save overseeing Chris's training. Even that had become increasingly difficult to stomach, despite the intense focus and drive he had. I am guessing that I was just completely burnt. I think I was also a bit out of sorts as well, being bluntly told that no one likes me from a colleague was really hard to stomach, especially when my heart and soul was securely woven into the fabric. I finally gave up, lost my taste for anything and everything that was speedskating. I was however grateful for people like Ryan who encouraged me to keep at it, despite not knowing my feelings, or the politics. Then there was Bob, who believes whole heartedly in Chris and has taught me that there is no room at the top for such nonsense and afforded me the break I needed. So onward I plodded not sure what was in store for this season.

The past few weeks have been different. Maybe its because Chris is working hard on advocating for himself and I don't feel the immediate need to fight tooth and nail for him anymore. Maybe I have just grown up. Korea seemed to change something in me. Made me much more confident. I think seeing my work in a museum made me understand a great deal about persistence? Everything has changed, my teaching, my coaching, my outlook.

I spent 3 hours on the ice this weekend working in two different capacities: mentor and coach. I had 12 little kids trailing after me last night and managed one BINGO moment. I encouraged a kid to relax and glide. I discussed complex workout strategies with Chris and the nuances of wood kilns with Julia (who is 12). I realized that my love of speedskating is ingrained in my being as much as teaching or my own studio work is. I saw that glimmer over and over this weekend and I am better for it. I can't wait to see this season unfold!

See you on the ice! Remember HAMSTERS are COOL!

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