It's the feeling as if you are flying as you, of feeling icy wind slap your cheeks as you spread your wings. It's the racing with your sister. It's the wobbling around like you are taking your first steps as you find the courage to put the walker to the side and watching the six-year-old next to you do it with a thoughtless perfection (as well as with an assortment of tricks that you will never learn). That is the beauty of ice-skating in a rink.
I first went ice-skating when I was seven at a party but I don't remember liking it as much as I did later on. I can barely remember that so I'm not sure if that really counts for much. Anyway the first time I really went skating was in seventh grade. I was hanging out with a friend and somehow she and her family ended up taking me to the ice rink. I got a pair of rentals, a walker and I nervously stepped into the ice rink with her. I was the only one with a walker there. Even my friend's little sister was skating as easily as she was walking (she probably had been doing it ever since she could walk too or pretty close). It was hard for me at first but with her and her dad by my side, I began to get the hang of it.
I was sore as hell the next morning. I had also developed a huge bruise on my knee, the result of it banging up against the walker as I careened out of control. They were battle scars however, showing a fortitude that I did not I possessed. I was proud of having mastered something physical so quickly especially considering my clumsiness and lack of grace.
I would come back. The next few times were with them but eventually I convinced my family to go to the rink. My parents were probably just thrilled that I had found a fun way to get some exercise without the pressure and bad feelings that the treadmill brings.
Unlike with so many other things I've done, my eagerness for it did not waver. I went more and more and more, and it became increasingly apparent how serious I was becoming about it.
I have yet to get my parents out on the ice but I have gotten my sister to skate with me. Today, she skated for the first time without her walker (which was especially impressive considering that our family took a summer hiatus from skating).
It's much easier and much more beneficial to get your exercise in ways that cannot be measured by calories and that are fun. I do think that Portia DeGeneres, better known by Portia de Rossi, was right in that regard (in case you do not know this, Portia de Rossi battled eating disorders for twelve years and issues with over exercising and has stated this in her memoir). While exercising on a treadmill makes me feel shitty both physically and mentally, ice-skating brings out attributes of exercise that gym teachers harp about. It makes me feel energized, confident and fulfilled.
Ice-skating is revolutionary for me. I'll never feel passionate about it like I do for writing obviously but it's proved that sports/ physical exercise CAN be fun after all. That is an absolutely great feeling.