On adopting a skateboard

Two nights ago I had a dream. In this dream I was given a gift.

I am a big believer in the symbols that dreams send you. (And you might recall that I have a bit of a problem with gifts being symbols.)

Especially because this gift, it seems to me, is indicative of something I’m missing and that my inner self wants me to have.

But the gift was a skateboard.

Okay, even in the dream I was skeptical. The only person who would give me a skateboard is someone who has no idea how uncoordinated I am (it’s true; I broke an ankle while rollerskating) and furthermore I’m so out of shape how would I even begin to try some new sport?

But when I thought about it further, here’s what a skateboard asks of you: a low center of gravity. Flexibility. Alert senses. And a sense of play. All very good things! Things I am trying to cultivate in my life. Body + mind, alertness + flexibility.

Also important: when I looked closer at the skateboard in my dream, I saw that it was unusually wide. And actually it had no wheels! (The giver in my dream wanted me to pick out my own special wheels, maybe glittery ones.) So this skateboard was nice and wide, making it easier to stand on, and it wouldn’t go anywhere until I decided it was time to give it wheels.

So really this skateboard, this gift I want to give myself, is a space to practice balance, in all senses of the word. And a space to feel safe. And a space to have fun.

It’s funny because this symbol I’m reluctantly adopting goes nicely with my current mantra that I use when stretching and thinking about my body — I am recovering from a bad back injury and have all sorts of corners and parts that don’t work right — and this mantra came to me like the skateboard dream. It popped into my head and I immediately thought no way, that can’t be my mantra, that’s dumb. The mantra is: strong, fast, flexible.

Flexible, okay I’m into that, sure, but strong and fast? Ridiculous, was my first thought. Those are not things I thought I wanted! And yet like a stubborn stray cat this mantra kept coming back to me, so I kept it, and now I know that part of me does want to be strong and fast, even if it’s by my own definition. Because being fast allows me to chase after my daughter, and you can’t be fast without being strong enough to get your body moving in one direction, and you can’t become strong if you’re not willing to get limber and flexible first.

So my body mantra came to me unbidden, and now this skateboard thing has come to me, too. I was just lamenting last week that I had no idea what I wanted for my birthday (it’s tomorrow!) and all the lame ideas I could come up with had to do with finding time for myself, which wasn’t satisfying for some reason. I wanted to desire something good for myself, not just a panicky oh-god-I-need-five-minutes-peace thought. Every parent wants that. I’m never not going to want that. So what is the thing that I really want?

A skateboard, apparently. The thing that I didn’t know I wanted. Space to practice balance: the Yoga room, and elsewhere in my life. Space to feel safe. And space to have fun.

Thanks, brain, for coming up with something totally unexpected. I had no idea, but it’s just what I wanted.


About jesse k.

Writer. Mama. Spy in the house of self-awareness. Occasional crafter, letterpress geek, and academic snob.
This entry was posted in Sovreign Symbols, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to On adopting a skateboard

  1. hillary says:

    We have a 3rd grade girl in our neighborhood who skateboards and I was just thinking yesterday about how there is such a big difference between a skateboard and a bike but… why? I have no idea why a million girls ride bikes here and there is apparently ONE who skateboards. I don’t have the answers, I’m just sayin’. As a girl who skateboards, I find it to be tragic and sucky.

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