Nothing scars you deeper than the things you haven’t done, sings Cory Branan in Hell Bent and Heart First (seriously check out some of his stuff it’,s amazing). That line of the song got stuck in my head today and got me thinking back to the moment when I decided I needed to do some things or it would leave me wondering when I was old.
Rewind to end of July 2008 and to my stag do (bachelor party for the North Americans). After taking daunts for two weeks about going skydiving and having been blindfolded and dressed into something I thought could only be skydiving gear, imagine my surprise after the blindfolds came off and I found myself in the HPK locker room surrounded by guys like Antti Miettinen (Winnipeg Jets), Niko Kapanen (former Atlanta, Phoenix, Dallas) and Teemu Lassila (World Championship goalie). The sober part of my bachelor party was a training session with the pro team and man I got to say, the experience opened my eyes.
Back in those days I was playing recreational hockey and after that I wanted to see whether or not I had what it took to get to a league level of hockey. Despite age and other issues (my ACL) being against me, I was able to skate with some good teams and see that despite being out of shape, I could sort of hang on for speed. I realised that by working hard I would be able to get my fitness levels back up and be able to compete and it is exactly what I set out to do after I had recovered from the knee operation.
I joined my team, Bristol Pitbulls for the 2010-2011 season and I’m still there. With each season that I’ve spent with the team I’ve learned more and pushed myself each off season to get better and fitter. I feel that during the journey and the goal that I have set for myself, I have learned some valuable life lessons and I’ve grown as a person. The road hasn’t been the easiest to travel with stats not being what I expected them to be and some injury issues, I wouldn’t trade these past few years for anything. As and when the day eventually comes when I have to hang my skates up, I don’t have to wake up wondering “what if “.
After all, nothing scars you deeper than the things you haven’t done.
If you are on the lookout for top quality hockey gear at best prices, please click on the image below