Shred Your Fears is a womens’ empowerment group that’s teaching women how to get out of their own head and face their fears through skateboarding. It was created by Maya Henry who has a lot of successes from the group. I may have broken a bone but I still enjoyed the moments, the positive people, and the vegan cheese.
“What are you afraid of?” I sat in a semi-crowded indoor skate park filled with fearless women and easily scribbled falling.
I absolutely expected to fall a few times but confidence was at an all-time high because the instructors at Switch and Signal Skate Park knew what they were doing and I had kneepads, elbow pads, and a helmet. I was covered.
After a delicious Shred Your Fears Vegan Brunch, a sister circle, center yourself yoga, and a pep talk, I felt like I could do a little more than kick push. I mean, I didn’t expect to be Tony Hawk but at least Tony Pigeon by the time I left.
I even shared a post on my Instagram Story saying I was most definitely one hundred percent going to fall and knowing gravity has never been my friend I decided to go forth with this fear anyways. I felt comfy with just kicking and pushing but I wanted to go down the tiny little incline (we can’t even call it hill). The instructor told us to go with gravity on the way day. I had a few strangers by my side cheering me on and I had my safety gear covered. I put my foot on the board and took a deep breath as I quickly went down the hill and I leaned in to be one with gravity. Me and gravity got to know each other way more than I anticipated.
I put my hand out to break my fall. They tell you not to do that but it’s second nature. A sharp pain went up my arm and my wrist stung but growing up as the only girl I had been through worse pain. Most people would’ve went to an urgent care center but I’m not most people. I grabbed wrist guards and then I went back to kick pushing because the fall humbled me a bit.
“I’ll just ice it and take some ibuprofen later on today,” I told everyone. I was convinced I just needed pain meds and nap so I went home and did just that. After my two hour never-ending #Sundayfunday Nap I woke up in pain and horror.
“Wow,” I remember my boyfriend taking a look at it and telling me I should most definitely get it checked out because my once painful wrist was now swollen painful forearm and it wouldn’t straighten.
“Are you sure it’s not your elbow?” My cousin who I go to for all my medical questions (because doctor’s visits are expensive) asked me and it turns out she was on to something.
“We can’t even look at it until you pay us.” My card wouldn’t slide and I sat across the urgent care intake woman in a pair of black and yellow leggings that my boyfriend turned into a makeshift sling. In an unbelievable series of events I had to then go back home to get a card that would slide and return so I could pay them so they could assess the amount of damage I had done to myself. How urgent of urgent care.
All that just for the doctor to look at me and say, “it looks fine. It’s just swollen.”
I shook my head from side to side refusing that answer. I had never broken a bone a day in my life but I was certain this was beyond swollen and I didn’t pay $75 for such an assessment.
“I don’t know. I think I broke something.” That was the push that she needed I guess because next she sighed before asking someone to escort me to the x-ray room.
“Can you straighten your arm so I can get a better picture?”
I smiled at the X-Ray tech and shook my head. “If I could straighten it I would still be asleep.”
“We want the best picture.” She smiled at me trying to negotiate my bone to straighten. If that was mildly a possibility it would have straightened like yesterday.
“Ideally this is as straight as it’s going to get.”
“Okay! Okay! I see you’re sweating trying to straighten it so just leave it there.” She finally caved and went back to take a picture.
“If it’s something small I won’t be able to see it until tomorrow. If it’s big then, I can diagnose it.” The doctor explained before putting the X-Ray on the screen. “You broke it.”
I nodded kind of already figuring that out and listening as she told me about the pain meds and the sling and the sleeping that would be impossible for quite some time.
“How did you break it with elbow pads on it?”
I guess anything is truly possible. I’m glad my mom taught me to speak up or I would be walking around convinced that my arm was just swollen. I’m glad I work in healthcare (unfortunately) because after several doctors’ appointments and physical therapy, I only owe $300. If anyone has any need for an arm sling please let me know, as I was charged $100 for it.
Did I break my first bone at 30? Yes! Did I shred my fears? Technically. Will you see me on a skateboard any time soon? Probably not as it’s been almost a month and I’m still recovering from my fall. I can’t pick anything slightly heavy up with my left hand and newsflash, when you’re living on the third floor everything is heavy.
Facing your fears is empowering but it is also important to remember that as you get older you don’t heal like you used to. My mother taught me that the sky was the limit but it was also humbling to go the realization that I am not Superwoman. I can barely walk without tripping over my own size nine and a half feet why would I think I could learn how to skateboard in a day?
It was fun until it wasn’t. The people are awesome. The workshops are empowering. I am grateful that Maya invited me into such a positive space.
The next time I want to face my fears head on I think I’ll stick to the whole being in uncomfortable spaces figuratively and not literally.
The takeaways I got from all this is my boyfriend is a gem and to remember that being confident is great but always remember to be cautious.
Have you stepped out of your comfort zone lately? When is the last time you faced a crazy fear?