Monday, January 23

Living life out of the zone

Yesterday was an amazing day. Around here, we typically spend our Sundays skiing the local hill, paying homage to the beauty that surrounds us. And yes, we pick Sundays so we can get on the hill before the church crowd can get out of services. :-)

My family loves to get outside, no matter what time of year. Of course, I prefer the warm, sunny, sandy beaches the most, but it ain't happening where I live. (For those that don't know, I live in a landlocked state. I'm still not quite sure how that happened.) A few years ago, my husband learned how to snowboard. I was supposed to learn that year with him, but instead was spending my time hooked up to iv's and trying not to puke.

About 3 years ago, the kids and I learned how to ski. I had previously taken lessons and tried to learn boarding, but since I'm not one to risk life and limb, I decided that wasn't my sport. Hubby says I was *thisclose* but... whatever. I still wanted to be able to do something together as a family, however, so I took up skiing. Hey, if an 80 year old can learn to ski, I should be able to. Right? Let's just say, my kids can smoke me on the mountain.

I'm happy to report that after 3 seasons, I have made it to the point where I can go down a normal hill and not feel like I'm about to die. I mean, do any of you realize how steep some of those runs look to a newbie? Yikes! I took the quad lift up, which is the easiest to get off, thank you very much. I made my turns with a bunch of snowplows thrown in for good measure. And I did it 3 more times. Without killing myself. Or falling on my face. (Well, I did fall on my face. But that was so 2 runs ago! Yeesh!)

I'm so very thankful to my cousin, who is pretty much a pro snowboarder. He did give me some advice, but the reason I'm so thankful is that he didn't laugh when I lost a ski in a fall. He didn't mock me when I must have looked like an idiot all scrunched over trying not to bite it. He even stayed with us all when I was the one holding us back. Technically, he's my cousin by marriage. But in my heart, he's family, and I want to publicly thank my "real" cousin for marrying him. :-)

I don't quite know what the point of this post is. I guess it's a reminder that you're never too old to learn new things. Learning to ski was something completely out of my comfort zone. But these days, my zone is expanded. I've discovered there's really no harm in trying something new. If it sticks, great. If it doesn't work out, I haven't lost anything. Even the time spent doing it has not been a waste, as I always learn something from it. I love the feeling of living. And that means taking risks. Measured, thoughtful risks, but risks nonetheless.

What have you done outside your zone? Let me know in the comments. I love hearing about other people's victories.


  1. I "learned" to ski at 19 on a date and never felt comfortable. After three kids in ski lessons and on ski team I was being out-skied daily and hated it. When I turned 40 my husband insisted it was my turn to take lessons. I balked for a bit, then finally agreed and it was the best thing I ever did for myself. People who learn a sport as a child (like the rest of my family) have no clue how to break down the parts for a newbie. Within a few weeks I was able to ski black diamonds...and within a few years I was able to ski black diamonds without peeing my pants. Kudo's to trying new things!

  2. familyraiser: My husband wants me to take more lessons this week. Maybe even along with the kiddos. I don't know if I'm quite as fast a learner as you are, but I hope to be able to ski with my friends (read: as fast) soon. You give me hope! And kudo's to you for learning new things!