Onward and Upward!

Yes, I have a blog. You can chuckle, golf clap, roll your eyes, or stand up and shout “Hooray!” I’ll be honest – this surprises me as well. But as I was told over and over again about my better-than-average storytelling abilities, I thought – what the heck – I’ll give it a shot! And it’s been quite a year…part of me wishes I had started this a year ago, but sadly I procrastinated – shocking. 

So, I’ll start with this. My second greatest fear. 

When I was seven or eight years old, I attended a birthday party at Texas Skatium – that’s right, How ’bout them Cowboys! – in Garland, Texas. (People wonder where my Texas pride comes from – it’s because of places like that.) I was minding my own business watching my friend blow out her birthday candles wearing a multi-colored windsuit, hair bow, and turtleneck when out-of-nowhere my feet decided to leave me. 

I believe the skating rinks still have the tan leather roller skates with orange wheels, but if not – maybe they’ve modernized…either way, you all know the kind I’m talking about. They made that horrible screeching noise when you (I, unsuccessfully) tried turning the corner during the Dice Game. That’s what I had on this fateful day. 

Only thing I remember is my feet deciding to go underneath the bench I was standing behind, and then waking up to my friend’s dad staring at me – a little too close for comfort if you really must know – and my mom saying my name over and over. Jourdaaannn. Jourdan, wake up honey!

I apparently was knocked unconscious for a minute or two. We headed to the doctor for an MRI, a cat scan, etc., etc. All-in-all, nothing was wrong – mild concussion. I think I missed out on the Lisa Frank birthday cake. 

But something unveiled itself that day – my fear of slipping/sliding/feet leaving me. 

Yes, I have a legitimate fear of my feet coming out from under me. (There isn’t an actual name for this fear, I’ve looked.) This involves everything from slip-n-slide birthday parties in my younger days to living in Colorado and not being a fan of skiing or snowboarding at the age of 26. It’s rough. 

I don’t mind roller coasters, bungee jumping, bungee swings, sledding, tubing, water sports, being pulled behind a 4-Runner in the snow while sitting in a laundry basket, rafting, heights, spiders, feet, being alone, antiques…I don’t mind any of these. But I have a substantial fear of losing my footing. 

If I come to a slippery sidewalk or hill, I will do everything in my power to avoid it. I’ve even been known to squat down – as close to the ground as possible – and slide down a driveway just so I would get to the bottom safely. 

Let’s just say I want to lower my center of gravity. 

Climbed in Jellie Shoes.

I slid down the side of Treasure Falls in Wolf Creek, Colorado on my buttocks just so I would not have to rely on my footing to get me to the bottom. I was 23 years old. Prior to my roller-skating incident, I climbed Treasure Falls in Jellie Shoes!!! Remember those?! They have the traction of my thumb. My dad will attest to this since he was the one below me getting pelted with pebbles. 

How can I overcome this – you may ask? Not a clue. I tried! In 8th grade, we went on the ever-anticipatory Middle School Ski Trip to – Santa Fe. If you know anything about skiing, you know Santa Fe’s slopes are made of ice. I took lessons. The ski instructor led me down the hill, let go, and I veered into a (manmade) snow bank as he was yelling “Snowplow! Snowplow!” I believe I was wondering why in the world a snowplow would be on the slopes at that moment, when my left ski went one direction and my right ski went straight into the snow bank. I was stuck. 

A kind mother-type woman skied up as I was moaning into the side of the snowbank and wishing that I had the mittens from when I was younger that looped around my neck and strung through each sleeve. My gloves were now friends with my left ski at the bottom of the bunny slope. She helped un-clip my right ski and dislodged me from the Drift of ’97. That was it. I was done. 

I’m not a quitter. 

Okay, maybe at that moment, but in life – no way, José. So, I’ve been trying to overcome this. Really! In college, I had the kids I babysat try to teach me how to skateboard. They were very nice about holding my hands the entire time. Whenever it snows, I try to walk with purpose to my car, rather than walking like I’m tiptoeing around gigantic cactus bushes outside Tempe. I’ll say this, I’m improving. Every winter, I tell my friends, “I think I want to learn how to snowboard.” This year, had it not been for my unemployment, I would have thought about purchasing a ski pass. 

More about that next time…

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11 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Ali
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 22:51:59

    It’s totally genetic… or maybe just a tall people thing, but I DEFINITELY have this fear too! This would be why I avoid things like trust falls at every leadership trip you go on or even sledding sometimes on perfect snowy days along with the aforementioned skating and icy sidewalks and Treasure Falls. Yes, I have this phobia/disorder as well. Thank you DNA for 1. making me tall with a high center of gravity and a long way to fall and 2. giving me the fear of falling and looking ridiculous.

    Love the blog. Great first entry.

    Reply

  2. Sheila Hood
    Feb 28, 2010 @ 23:42:21

    drift of ’97! I laugh at this! Thanks for sharing your blog w/me! I look forward to following it and for what is to come. What about wood floors?

    Reply

    • Jourdan
      Mar 01, 2010 @ 07:23:24

      Sheila – no real issues with wood floors, except I’ve never been one to run and slide (on any surface). If I try to, I immediately make myself stop.

      Reply

  3. Shea
    Mar 01, 2010 @ 08:53:05

    I’m laughing, and loving that you have stepped into the blogging world! Mine is not near as funny as yours, but can check it out! http://www.themoseshome.blogspot.com

    Reply

  4. Dad
    Mar 01, 2010 @ 08:59:20

    Great beginning with a lot of associated memories. I, too, continue to walk gently, not boldly, across icy patches of ground. I have fallen too many times, including once on one of my first dates with your mother. She thought I had done it on purpose and stood over me with an “Im not impressed” look, while I tried to get my lungs to re-inflate.

    Reply

    • Ali
      Mar 01, 2010 @ 09:29:04

      BAHAHA I wish Jourdan and I could have been around to see your dating process. That doesn’t seem to ever be able to work out though…

      Reply

  5. David
    Mar 01, 2010 @ 17:11:19

    What up cousin! Love it!

    Reply

  6. Katie
    Mar 01, 2010 @ 18:44:44

    Oh my gosh, the JELLY SHOES. I remember that day all too well. Also, the kids in my class don’t even know what roller skates are. How sad is that?? I should show them this picture on your blog.

    Welcome to blogworld, cuz! 🙂

    Reply

  7. Tia Juan(a)
    Mar 02, 2010 @ 14:45:12

    I giggled outloud when I read this, early yesterday morning. We all remember the jelly shoe saga -and especially Tom’s face as he helped you down that last hill. But, you did it!!! I felt that way then anyway. Now I am glad you did all those awkward things so you can write to all of us about it. You really are quite the writer.

    Reply

  8. Becky
    Mar 03, 2010 @ 20:17:28

    Oh J-Dog, the best part of this post for me was being reminded of being pulled behind a 4-Runner in the laundry basket over the ice…good times, good times! Can’t wait to see you this weekend!!!!!

    Reply

  9. Alison
    Mar 11, 2010 @ 08:33:33

    Love the blog! You are a great story teller. Like Becky, I too loved the reference to being pulled behind a 4-Runner in a laundry basket on ice. What a great memory! It was so fun seeing you last weekend!

    Reply

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