Friday, February 11, 2011

Two days to Selection and counting...

I often find myself in the position where I wonder where I am in my skiing. I have, for so long, been the weird girl that people generously not only tolerate but encourage and help. I'm the one in the group of outstanding skiers that is falling, coming out of her gear and skiing like a spaz.

There is still a voice in my head that says, "Hey, you are doing okay. I think you are skiing in the top third of the group. The bottom of the top third. Nice." and then there is a voice, about 75% off the time (Thankfully OFF snow) that says, no, that can't be right, you are surrounded by wonderful, loving people who are indulgent of your ridiculous optimism and when they say "That's good!" what they mean is, "That's good for you. But its still way way way far away from where you need to be."

My job this month especially, has been to gently and lovingly examine the source of that voice, rather than listening to it and capitulating, or listening to it and getting angry, or believing it, or any emotional reaction.

I feel that way because that was the truth for a while.
But that was me three and four years ago. I'm half way through the fifth year of my journey, and I'm realizing that I'm prepared for this exam.  I've trained to it, I've studied for it, and I've double checked my internal coach with the examiners and selector's eyes that I've been skiing with. It seems like when I'm skiing below the bar, I know it, and most of the time, I'm in the box.
Of course, there are several things to this selection aside from the skiing. There is movement analysis, technical proficiency, and teaching, as well as indoor and on snow presentations.

Today, a group of about 13 of us skied Highlands in a mock selection with John Wiltchen. It was fantastic. The snow was about as good as it can ever get, the bumps were perfect, the temperature finally warmed up, and the company was outstanding.

"Tom Repairing" went to a good home today, and the exam is officially ON.
I got to ski with Kurt and Cindy, two of my best friends and inspirations. Andrew Rumph, who I've been training with for a few weeks, got me back on the horse as far as being willing to pop off stuff and I even dropped about five feet off of a little rock, and realized that I can do this, I'm a solid skier, I have the technical ability to drop things. I'm back on the horse, and I have Andrew's inspiring and incredibly athletic skiing to thank for that, not to mention his infectious playful attitude.

The group was nervous as a whole, and it happened all the sudden. We got together, we were going to ski the tasks on the likely terrain we would be tested on. We rolled up to the top on the first run, and suddenly, it felt just like the exam. Butterflies galore.

It was a great morning, I was glad at first that it wasn't the day of the exam because I was so incredibly nervous, and I got to practice implementing my own performance plan on myself. It worked well, and in spite of the nerves, I felt like I skied to my potential.

On the chairlift, I found out that I had sold a painting, which means I can pay for my exam (nothing like three hours before the deadline!). I'm so grateful for that support, the timing is really not an accident, but I'm glad that I have something of value that I can give to the person who is so generously helping me reach my goals.

In the afternoon, we had some blow out fun runs on short steep pitches and then I came home to play with the kids and hang out with my friend Eric, who is here from Beaver Creek and crashing on my couch for the exam.

When I left Highlands today, I had an incredulous feeling. I felt solid, happy, and prepared. I feel like my skiing, in general, is where it needs to be do pass this exam, and when I am skiing really well, I might do really well on some sections of the exam.  I'm excited to go. My kids are excited for me.

Last night, Bodhi made me tea and tucked me into the couch while I read Harry Potter to the kids. Ethan got my heating pad all ready to go. Liat has been my dedication coach, my positive morale booster, and a great helping hand with the kids when it gets intense.

Tomorrow is a fun ski day with Schanzy and Cindy in the morning, and to bed early before the three day selection starts. Thank you to everyone who has been so supportive, and good luck to all the TA and E1 candidates who are going this week!


Jongira said...

Sounds like a perfect way to pre-day the exam: bonne chance on the day of: sending you good thoughts!

Liat said...

Yay! Sounds like an amazing day!