Not only were the skates heavy and awkward but I learned to skate on the sidewalks outside our home in Abilene, Texas. Our sidewalks were cracked and if you had any speed at all and hit the rough and uneven pavement a fall was the predictable outcome. I don't remember how many times I fell but I usually had bruises, skinned knees and elbows and lots of colorful band-aids to show for my skating adventures. ( Remember this was long before knee and elbow pads and helmets. So if occasionally Diva acts goofy its probably from a childhood skating accident.) Occasionally my parents would take pity on my injuries and take us skating at the local roller rink.
Ah.....the roller skating rink with a smooth wooden floor with lots of room to skate and shoe skates that they rented out. Back in my day, it was 8-year-old heaven. For my 8th birthday, my parents rented out the roller rink and had my birthday party there. I was the most popular girl in school for that brief week. I was able to invite all my classmates, Sunday School class friends, Brownie troop, neighbors, and friends. What could be better than shoe skates, birthday cake, presents, music to skate by as well as skating games and" couples only" skating time. I skated with Jerry Cleveland my third-grade crush....he had braces, bright red hair cut in a crew cut, thick glasses and was the smartest boy in my class. (Yes, sweet Emma....your Diva was attracted to Nerds even back in the day. Jerry was a math whiz and did my math homework for me. (But don't tell great grandmother--she just thought I got really smart in math in that year!)
I broke my arm roller skating. It was the first of three broken wrists that I experienced in the first, second and third grade. My cousins used to say that "I was slippery", I think they meant that I was breakable. It was my left wrist. I was going too fast down an incline and couldn't stop myself from hitting a parked car. I used my left hand to try and stop myself but it bent backward and I heard it snap. I wore a cast on it for 6 weeks.
In high school, I used to watch Roller Derby on TV. The girls skated on a banked track and it was really a physical contact sport. My friends always laughed at me that I enjoyed watching it and called me the Roller Derby Queen. I actually got to go to a game in Norfolk and meet one of my heroes...Joan Westin of the Bay City Bombers. I laughed when your Auntie Becky told me she was interested in skating with the Roller Derby in Saskatoon.
Who knows maybe she will fulfill one of my long lost dreams and be a roller derby queen.
As I write this for you today I want you to know how excited we are to see you play soccer, skate, practice your forms, write and create. Poppa and I love you very much and pray for your every single day. Know that you are always in my heart and in my thoughts.