It is now quarter of a century later. I thought I was going to able to abandon my seat in the Lutz corner (for those of you who are uninitiated, it is the place you will find more than 90% of skating moms at competitions) and take my rightful place front row center. I thought I would figure out where I was going to put all this "stuff" so I could start the next, few chapters of my life. I figured it was time to stop hoarding and clean my skating house.
While sorting, pitching and packing, I came to an epiphany of sorts. All the photos - boxes and boxes of them; all the videos, old music cassettes (who
remembers those?), competition medals, test certificates, chaperone credentials, ticket stubs,years of costumes and other memorabilia were actually representative of the really what is really important: Favorite trips, favorite rinks and cities; favorite competitions over the years. Certainly, those mattered. But what is truly the MOST important thing in this quarter century of frozen moments is all the friends I've made along the way. If it were not for skating, we probably would never have gone to some of these places nor met any of these people. Whether they are around the corner, the block or the world, they are the most important part of my collection.
So, I'll happily hoard my friends. I hope to keep them long after the music stops and the ice is resurfaced and the lights are shut off in the arena.
But along the way - starting very soon - look for me in the bleachers or standing by the glass (in a Lutz corner, of course) at some of my favorite past non-qualifying competitions; not to have "Remembrances of Things Past," (well, maybe a little..) but to look into the eyes of the new young ones coming up in the sport while I remind myself about how it all started, how far we've come, and still how far there is to go - in whatever direction life leads us. And, along the way, I hope to surprise a few people, see old friends, make new friends, encourage some young skaters and their parents - and in the process create new memories. After all, skating is a family. And family is everything.