This blog is long overdue, but I hope that it finds everyone well at the start of our 2011-2012 seasons. I just recently started a new chapter of my life as I moved out to Oxford, Ohio to start my freshman year at Miami University. One of the hardest things about this transition, other than moving 13 hours away from my mom, dad, and younger sister, was moving away from the other huge piece of my life, my 20 “sisters” and “family”, my team, the Skyliners. After skating with the Skyliners organization for the past 9 years, there were definitely a few tears shed as I had to say goodbye, but that being said, I was excited for the new opportunity that stood ahead of me. My Skyliners coaches, including Josh Babb, Jenny Gibson, and Sarah LeBlanc Blosat, could not have prepared me better as both a skater and person for the challenges that I face in college.
The first few weeks of college were surreal as I could not believe that after 10 years of attending Miami Summer Skating Camps and always dreaming of being a Redhawk, I was finally there. The week of tryouts took me by storm, with so many amazing skaters working for just 53 spots on the varsity teams. I was beyond thrilled when I was placed on the senior team, and it was clear that one of my life long dreams was really coming true.
So far, my experience on the team has been absolutely incredible. Being a varsity athlete at a division 1 university is something so special. Although each week is busier than the next, with classes, on-ice practices, off-ice practices, and much more, you always know that you have 52 other teammates standing behind you ready to support you and help you out whenever you may need it. The veterans on the senior team were so extremely welcoming and have really helped me get through these first 3 months of completely new experiences.Although Miami Skating gets a much later start than many other teams throughout the country, we really hit the ground running right away. In just the second week of post tryout practices, choreographer Sarah Kawahara came in to piece together the senior free skate. This was a whirlwind experience for the rookies, but ended with a very fun, creative program and 20 extremely exhausted girls. Less than 4 weeks later, choreographer Scott Brown came in to to “Jazz up” our very enthusiastic short program. At the conclusion of fall break weekend, we had 2 programs that we were completely thrilled with and had gotten a great critique from 3 U.S. Figure Skating officials. In addition to all of our busy practice schedules, the Miami teams participated in the Susan G Komen Race for the Cure, supported other Miami varsity teams in their sporting events, held spirit days at practice for homecoming week, walked in the Miami University Homecoming Parade, and had a very successful skating Parents Weekend.
This past weekend was filled with skater-parent reunions, family skates, and crowd filled performances. I was so excited to see my parents after 3 months of not seeing them. I’m so grateful that they were able to make the trip out to see all 3 teams perform their 2011-2012 competitive season programs and be here for such a nice weekend. This coming weekend both the collegiate and senior teams are looking forward to our first opportunity to skate between the periods of the hockey games making the sport better known across the campus.
Best of luck to all teams in their last weeks of practice prior to the competition season. That’s all for now! Can’t wait to see everyone at Porter!
Love & Honor,