November 15, 2012

Jammin' Like Never Before

I have set a new goal for myself: jam. Having played in two bouts far and jammed in neither of them, I am starting to see the appeal. It looks like so much fun, graceful, creative, dynamic! I see the appeal, but I don't feel it. Right now, every time I jam I want to have a nervous breakdown. I want to throw up in the trash can. My legs get shaky and I skate like a little foal taking her first steps (on roller skates). I fell in turn three on nothing. No one near me, no one hit me, I was even lead jammer, but I skate-locked MYSELF trying to do crossovers. Jamming is the bane of my derby existence right now.

Two times a week I gather my gear, put on my booty shorts, and try and talk myself into loving jamming. I sit in my car, screaming out rap music to make myself feel like a bad ass that can jam like nobody's business. I imagine that I am happy to do it and that I am a fleet footed roller derby machine. Sometimes, this gets me through the practice. I just don't know how to make the switch between pretending to love jamming and actually loving jamming. What if I never do? What if every time I take the track I feel this way?

What if I always have to see that look of disappointment in my teammates eyes when I pass on the jammer panty jam after jam? I understand that this is a team sport, and they can make all the arguments in the world to me about how "it will make me a better blocker" and "we all have to do it" but at this point, I don't care. I have asked myself why I feel this way about it. I wonder if I am just not an attention seeking person, I don't want all eyes on me. But I am not sure how true that can be if I write a blog for all to see. I must admit that I think it's because I am afraid to suck.

Suga Smaxxx - My beautiful derby sister,
jamming like a pro!
It's good to have support like this.
I mentioned in a previous blog that if I wasn't naturally good at something, I have just quit. My teammates (god bless them) won't let me quit jamming. That isn't an option. And the result is that I have to really bad at this for (what feels like) an interminable amount of time. Right now, it looks like forever. While I am really excited for the Salt and Pepper bout this weekend I am borderline filled with dread about it also. Sitting in my kitchen, writing this post, my stomach has turned uneasy just from thinking about it. I wonder what my friends and family will think when I never make it out of the pack? What if I don't even make my initial pass and the other jammer gets my point over and over for two solid minutes because she knows I am not on a scoring pass and she can just keep going. What if I take a major penalty and have to sit in the box totally helpless to what is happening, just watching??

I have said it before and I will say it again for anyone who missed it. Roller derby is hard. It is physically taxing, emotionally draining, it takes up my time, my money, and my energy. But it has also given me so much. Because of derby I am happier, more confident, and self-assured. Because of derby I have a community, a hobby, and stronger sense of identity. So I guess I can sacrifice my pride, jam like the wind, and give my teammates two minutes of madness in another position.

Derby Love,
Mollytov Maguire

1 comment:

  1. Lol wow, you pretty much quoted my email to you listing the things I messed up while jamming Monday as your biggest fears in jamming. And like I said, you don't have to jam during the bout, save that for next season, when you're ready.