I never had the chance to go skiing when I was little since neither my parents nor close friends were skiers. Once my elementary school organized a ski trip but that was my entire encounter with any type of alpine sports. Despite growing up 2 hrs outside of Whistler and being local to another handful of beautiful mountains, I never learned how to ski.
This season, I decided to take up a lesson at Mount Seymour, followed by a ski trip with friends to Grouse Mountain, when I was in Vancouver. My initial excitement quickly sizzled into anxiety on the day before my ski lesson. I recalled stories of family friends and co-workers who had broken wrists and legs while skiing or snowboarding, and I almost let myself listen to my snow-fearing parents try to talk me out of going all together. I thought I would definitely break something. I was brooding with fear.
When I did get to my lesson, I immediately realized that the experience would be nothing like the near-death experience I had created in my mind. I actually really enjoyed being in the snow and riding the powder. In fact, I was kind of good at skiing, well, at least pizza-ing and falling. Yeah, I was very good at falling. Given how much fun I had, I don’t know why I waited so long before learning how to ski. It’s silly how we let ourselves believe what we want at the hint of fear. The next time I’m afraid of the unknown, I’ll let my ski experience be a reminder to stop dreaming up fictional excuses.
Also, I want to provide a shameless (and unsolicited) plug for my ski instructor. If you are looking for a ski lesson on Mount Seymour, I recommend Jordan – young guy who recently moved to Vancouver from the UK. He was all smiles and gave me the confidence I needed to really enjoy my first ski experience.
Happy New Year & let 2013 be the year you overcome your fear!