I used to believe in adventure and trying new things. Then I went skiing a couple weeks ago. I still have a big bruise on my left knee and dents on my right shin from the ski boot.
I’d like to make a public apology to the parents and young children on the bunny hill who had to suffer watching me attempt to ski.
When I first approached the bunny hill I thought, “Seriously? This isn’t a hill! It’s barely an incline.” Overconfidence is occasionally one of my weaknesses.
I stepped on the magic carpet and headed to the top of the “hill.” (Really, that’s just a fancy name for a flat escalator that goes uphill. There’s nothing magical about it, especially when they abruptly stop it for some kid who has fallen and I nearly fall and break my nose.)
At the top of the bunny hill I gave myself a little push forward. I figured I’d have to work to keep myself going down the hill seeing as it was nearly flat. Someone had apparently waxed the bottom of my skiis, and suddenly I was flying down the “hill.” Only problem? I wasn’t exactly sure how to stop.
Parents all around me were yelling “pizza slice” at their kids. I thought it was a bribe, as in “If you stop crying and fighting me about skiing I’ll give you pizza!” (There was a lot of crying and fighting on that bunny hill. I decline to comment as to how much of it was me.) Then I realized they were telling their kids to “make a pizza slice” with their skiis – wide in back, pointed together in front. Supposedly that’s supposed to slow you down. Supposedly.
I’m still gaining speed – wind whipping through my hair, stinging my eyes – when I see a group of preschool ski students with their instructor directly in front of me at the bottom of the hill. I also should note that I didn’t know how to turn.
That’s when I started to desperately pray. “Please, God. Just let me fall and not crash into the group of preschoolers!”
And fall I did. Right next to the group of gawking preschoolers.
“I made it! I made it down the hill!” I shouted as I raised one fist in victory.
The ski instructor’s mouth was twitching and I saw her chest heave to hold in laughter before asking, “Are you sure you’re ok?”
“Yup. I’ll be fine. As soon as I get these skiis off!” I answered.
I did eventually master the bunny hill and the pizza slice. I even attempted a green hill that was supposedly the easiest of the easy. That wasn’t exactly the brand of adrenaline rush I prefer.
I think I’ll stick to running.
However, there’s always a good story and lesson to be learned in adventure!
This time of year reminds me much of that last quarter of a ski hill. As we cruise to the finish line for the school year and so many other activities, I often feel like life is speeding out of control and I don’t know how to stop. Field trips, School activities, and extra curricular activities pile on top of my own regular schedule, and I often fear I’m going to crash at the bottom.
It’s the slippery slope of busyness. One activity builds on another until your speeding down the hill nearly out of control.
And so I’m pizza-slicing this spring by learning to say “no,” or “not right now.” As my mom recently reminded me – when you say no to something it’s because you’re saying yes to something else – your family, your health, your sanity.
I don’t want to just speed through life so fast that I can’t enjoy the view.
So what are you saying “yes” to this spring? How are you controlling the impending busyness that this time of year can bring?