I recently signed up for a local community volleyball league and tonight was the first set of games. This particular park district has had leagues like this for awhile and the friends that I am playing with have been part of it before. One other girl and I are the newbies.
I say re-learning because I wasn't the first picked in gym class pretty much my entire gym class taking era. I remember junior high was when it was a contest to see out of about five of us who would be the last pick. While I excelled in school and band, gym wasn't that great. We weren't really pushed to try and more so got pushed to the end of the line for things. Looking back I might have been able to try to stop this more but at ages 13/14 there is only so much you can do. (However if you do call title 9 on a gym teacher because he refuses to let you play w the boy in the co-ed group during softball, you will get sent to the locker room early. Proof that I may not have been good at sports but I was no pushover.)
High school wasn't much better. I later decided to take a dance class and later when my academic waver was lost (AP/Honors statuses = able to not take gym until the school got rid of it) outdoor education (rollerblading, biking, camping, wall climbing etc.) These were fun and did not include the horror of team sports. I take that back. I am great at dodge ball.
When my friends first mentioned the volleyball team I couldn't help but think back to high school and beforehand. True it is blurry now due to it being over ten years, maybe 12?, since the last time I played volleyball. I was back as the braces wearing grunge chick w Bettie Page/Gwen Stefani style bangs in gym class with my skater shoes w the Mt Dew tabs in the laces. I has to shake this off and think that this was a long time ago and yet it led to me ignoring stuff because of it.
Hubs encouraged me to join the team and my other friends were bugging me to join as well. I was on the fence for a long time.They aren't super seriously growly competitive and so I shouldn't worry about being yelled at by a team member (which had happened years ago.) These are people we see on a constant basis, good friends that I text all the time and see at least every few weeks. I was in.
Tonight was a learning experience in that while I may have missed the ball numerous times and have a bruise forming on my right knee, I had fun. If someone had help to give me they actually told me or showed me, not barked orders like some sort of drill sergent. I am actually looking forward to practice. I also found out that we are technically a C team since the league had tiers. That makes me feel better since people who are incredibly skilled at volleyball are placed together (for the most part, but I will get to that in a moment.)
We ended up playing three games with two teams. The first two counted for the league and the third was for fun. The first team were worthy opponents. They were good but we did manage to get some good points scored against them. One girl was really good and the one to watch. Overall we lost but we had fun. I managed to meet my "one good hit" quota for each game. This week is one. Next week may be one more and so on. The second team was really good. I found out about the tiers after the three games were done and were surprised that they weren't a level up. One guy consistently slammed the ball to an extent that got aggravating. There is a fine line when showing skill becomes showing off and then become a little much. Part of me wanted to ask if he was having fun annihilating the ball. Oh and they had a line coach. I am unsure if someone telling them what was going on was allowed. I just pictured it as set back in high school and didn't let them bully me. If it makes you feel good to totally crush a team with lesser skill, go ahead. I'm just here to have fun.
I don't know who we are playing next week. I am planning to do my best, try not to slide in capri pants because that doesn't work (OUCH!), and try to get at least one really good block in.
There is something satisfying about that THWUNK noise when you are the reason the ball is sailing away and over the net.