I am from middle Tennessee.
I’ve only seen single digit temps a handful of times in my life, all of which have happened in the past 2 years.
I’ve only been outside in temps lower than 20 maybeeeee 15-20 minutes MAX.
I have seen roughly a foot of snow one time in my life, which was in Iowa for Spring Break 2013.
Needless to say, I have never skied.
I am from middle Tennessee.
All of that changed this past weekend when my boyfriend, Miles, took me out to Copper Mountain in Colorado. I have seen people ski/snowboard on TV. I had seen snow-capped mountains in pictures, but never the 2 together. I wasn’t completely sure what I was getting myself into this weekend. I was a little nervous, but ready to try a new adventure!
When we got to the ski resort on the first day, we started the rental process to get all my equipment. I was fortunate enough to be clothed by Miles’ friends in snow-proof pants/jacket/gloves to stay warm while I was out in the crazy cold and snow. After getting strapped into my boots and picking up my skis/sticks, we headed out (well, to be fair, I waddled out…like a penguin). We got to the snow area and popped the skis on my feet and headed to the lift. Again, this was my VERY first time moving at all in skis. We somehow got on the lift in one piece and Miles started going over “pizza” and “french fries”. The lift just kept going up..higher..and higher..and even more higher. The longer we rode, the more I started to realize that I was going to somehow have to get back down this mountain. Miles kept assuring me I would do great.
Once we got to the top and slid off the lift (doing ‘pizza’ to slow it down), Miles started looking at the different runs that were available. It was probably about then that he realized there were no green runs (easiest/beginner level) but only blue (medium/level 2). I had no idea what was what, so I just followed his lead. Everything looked very steep and I felt like I had NO idea what I was doing. We started by squaring to the mountain and trying to feel out where my weight was supposed to be in my feet so I could slide sideways down the mountain. I can’t honestly say how long this lasted because I kept feeling very scared and frustrated because everything was so steep. Miles stayed calm and sounded calm even through my frustration. The things he instructed me to do, I couldn’t comprehend because I just didn’t know what he meant. I guess at this point I should say that skiing is like walking to him…he has been skiing since the age of 3, so it’s no wonder I couldn’t understand what he was trying to tell me.
After falling over and over again, he finally decided to ski with me from behind while I held onto his poles. THIS really helped me get the feel for what it was supposed to be like, but I was still scared and fell multiple times. I believe it was during one of my falls that I was lying on the ground feeling hopeless (about ready to just set up camp and stay there because there was NO way I was making it down the mountain) that he apologized for taking me on a blue run. Again, this didn’t mean much to me because of how unfamiliar I was with it all.
We kept pushing through and I started learning my turns and eventually was able to do a couple big S’s on my own before falling. Finally, about 4 hours later, we made it to the base of the mountain. We took a break for food and drinks with his friends, then I got the opportunity to hang out while they all did a run. After re-convening, we all went back up the mountain to attempt a green run. Again, I was nervous, but found that it was starting to feel a little easier and come a bit more natural. I was a beginner amongst pro’s, but I confidence was slowly beginning to form. Not far in, one of his friends (who was snowboarding) fell and hurt her shoulder. It was scary and you could see the pain/fear in her face, but she stayed strong and the emergency people came and took her back down the mountain carefully. We still had to keep skiing, however, and decided to meet back up at the bottom.
It was about this time that I finally did my first little bit that I continuously kept going without freaking out or falling. I FINALLY started to enjoy what I was doing and felt confident. Unfortunately the sun was setting quick and the last part of the run was VERY icy and fairly steep. I got frustrated all over again and thought I would never make it. We ended up being the last people on the mountain and after another hour or so, finally made it to the bottom…in once piece. We spent the night stretching, eating and drinking in an awesome little place in Keystone.
The next day was even better and I felt MUCH more confident in my abilities, until I took a pretty icky tumble. Luckily I was able to get back up and finish the mountain, very slowly, before turning in all of my rental equipment and chilling out with good company and hot toddies!
One of my new friends made a remark that I found very fitting for both the weekend and life in general…”I think every time I fell down, I learned a little more and got a little better.” I couldn’t agree more! Though I spent the majority of the first day in the snow feeling hopeless, it made me much stronger by the time I got to more even ground and I felt that I could really appreciate it all that much more…but isn’t is the same with life events? Some of the worst things I have been through have made me the strong person I am now. Those same events have also helped me learn to really appreciate everything this life has to offer as well as have teaching me to not take anything for granted. So I would agree…every time I fall down, I learn a little more and I get a little better!
In the end, I must say, I am excited to get back out there and do it alllllllll over again!
#GlitterGlassesJourney #BeBraveEnoughtoFall #BeStrongEnoughtoGetBackUp