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Gymnastics Nostalgia | Looking back on my career



The other day I was looking through my VSCO (another photo sharing app) that I use to edit my photos on my phone. No one follows me on there and I usually just share my vibe-y photos. As I was going through them, I was like literally what the eff, I love going through these. There's so many photos on there that I love, remind me of specific places and moments, and they're never going to see the light of day. Really the difference is, I know no one is going to see that so I just post whatever I want. The result? I love it.


In honor of that, I'm trying to post more. I was leaving the gym a few weeks ago and saw the laptop that we used to save all our competition videos on from the gym camcorder (how's that for a throwback?). I knew generally what was on there, but it was so weird to actually go through.


The videos are 2008 to about 2011/12, and they're wild.


I look back on them with a weird sense of nostalgia. When I look at old photos from like Elementary school, I think they're adorable and it always reminds me of some funny story. When I look back on my gym videos, I feel bad for that kid that I see.


I see a kid who is trying so hard, who thought they were awful at gymnastics and quite frankly, fat. I don't look back with fondness, it makes me anxious. Looking back on specific routines or moments, I can feel the embarrassment and shame in real time.


I watch these videos through a very compassionate lens now. I was good at gymnastics, and I was very far from "fat". The weird part of it all is that I still fight those feelings today. And that's what I want to change. I want the memories that I am currently making to have a different perspective.


If I watch a video from training right now, I would feel the exact same way. And what a tragedy that is. So that's what I'm working on.


A kid that I train with last night asked me what I love so much about Gymnastics to keep going ("at my age" - like I'm 100 years old), and I thought that was such an interesting question. Most people ask when I'm going to retire or how long I'm going to "hold on" for, but no one has ever asked what I love so much about it to stay.


Through my EMDR therapy, I have found that a lot of my childhood memories are coming back and coming back much more vivd. When I replay my Gymnastics memories, they are so clear and at the base of all of them, it's so fun. I just love doing Gymnastics - I find the perfection fun, I find learning new things fun, I find the excitement of competing fun. There were a few years where the water was muddy, but training these last few months - I feel the same way when I'm filling in the blanks.


Training has been boring without a doubt. Yesterday I was having a bad day and I got to training and totally wanted to bail. I used my new cue of "What do I want my life to look and feel like? How can I live that now?" and it totally changed my day. I worked through some things I had been nervous about and really made some good progress on the next things I want to tackle. I was stretching last night and my first thought was "fuck, that was fun". The part I've hated is the fear and stress of these blanks in my career, but now that I'm addressing them, that same fun, light-hearted approach I had as a kid is back.


TTYS,

RS

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