15 Years Later and I Think I’m an Athlete Again

Before you get turned off by the title, please trust me that I’ll bring us back to scrapbooking.

Once upon a time I was an athlete. I played basketball, volleyball, and softball. By the time I turned 16, I had quit sports. I was in the marching band, so don’t worry I was still busy and didn’t turn to a life of juvenile delinquency.

Why did I stop playing sports? I believe that bad coaching played a big role in my retirement from sports.

There were the coaches that put a fourth grader in the fifth grade game and let me, a fifth grader, sit the bench the entire game.

There were the coaches that offered a prize for the player with the highest serving percentage. I had to quit the team in order to be considered for the prize. You see, I didn’t have great upper body strength so I served underhand. If you couldn’t serve overhand, then you were not allowed to serve during a game. After I quit and the coach begged me to rejoin the team, I caved and did. I was allowed to serve and surprise, surprise, had the highest serving percentage. I was made to feel bad about how I served despite being the most consistent in my serving on the entire team.

Then came high school sports. I was beyond burned out on my experiences on the basketball team so I did not go out for the team. I played volleyball, but was back on the bench quite a bit. I decided if I were going to be spending so much time on the bench, I might as well be doing something else, and did not go out for the team after that year. The insanity of all this is that in order to make the volleyball team you had to be able run two miles in less than 20 minutes. I was one of the first few of all the high school girls going out for volleyball (freshman through seniors), to cross the line. So maybe I wasn’t the best volleyball player, fine, I can accept this fact. But why didn’t anyone encourage me to join the track team? I definitely was not and still am not a sprinter, but I can do distance running. I never went out for the track team and was never encouraged to do so even though I clearly showed potential during the volleyball team tryouts.

Anyway, these are a few of the reasons why it took me about 15 years to take up running. And I am doing fine. I have little interest in competing in a 5K or any other race, primarily because of my prior sporting experiences. I also don’t really want to interact with other runners and risk being told or having it be implied that I am not a real runner because I am not drinking green shakes for breakfast or because I avoid running in cold rain.

I’m sure you are thinking, how on earth does this relate to scrapbooking? The thing is, is that it is easy to brush off what someone is doing as not really scrapbooking or that they are not really a scrapbooker. When we do this, we risk losing them as a scrapbooker. They might go 15 years before taking it up again. How can we make sure that doesn’t happen?

  1. Provide encouragement to someone who is stressing out about scrapbooking.
  2. Acknowledge that whatever the person considers to be scrapbooking actually is scrapbooking.
  3. Don’t guilt trip the person.

Do you have other ideas as to how to make sure a person stays a scrapbooker and isn’t driven from the hobby? Comment below or join the conversation on facebook or twitter.

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