I cannot express the words to describe how much I love Roller Derby. Skating, biffo, friendship, clan - it's all there. I live for Wednesday and Sunday night training sessions. I love 'scrimmage' - the practice games.
I can quite happily stand in front of a crowd and do public speaking, even though that is only something that has happened in the past 6 years without me going bright red. Now, I even enjoy it.
Roller Derby + Public Event = Bouting. And bouting...well, bouting ... it destroys my soul.
I don't just get nervous. I don't just get butterflies. It goes far beyond that, and is so over the top that it affects my mood for days on end, before and after the bout. It's not something that I can just 'get over', that will disappear with time.
I played the flute for 13 years, and whilst I was a very talented player (got accepted in Music Schools and Orchestras, etc), there was not a performance that my nerves didn't compromise. It is exactly the same with derby bouting. I don't know what the parallel is between these two types of events though. I performed in School Musicals for years and had no issue, but put a skate on my foot or a flute in my hand, and it all goes to shit.
I've had hypnosis for performance anxiety and public speaking, and the public speaking thing worked it self out eventually. But clearly I am still a bit mental.
And the really crazy thing? Even just writing about it here is increasing my heart rate, making my lips dry, making me sweaty.
TOOT TOOT, all aboard the crazy train! Next stop...Reffing?