I sit here attempting to write, just for the sake of writing. Lost in the seemingly endless chaos that fills my mind as I try to find the best words to supplement my first article. For this specific piece I will be reflecting on my first love, skateboarding and how it’s effects have shaped my life for over a decade.
I picked up a board for the first time at the age of ten and I was instantly hooked. Summer 2004, the hot pavement is vibrating and rumbling my feet as I ride down the street in front of my parents house. The cul-de-sac is flooded full of neighborhood kids riding scooters and getting air off of bent up black 1080 ramps. For those of you that remember, those could send you flying in the wrong way if you know what I mean. I was enamoured. My path was quick and painful but my intimacy with skating only grew.
By twelve, I was sponsored by our local skate shop. I was getting good quickly, kickflipping over stairs and even creating my own tricks. My days would start with breaking out the dusty vhs & playing my favorite skate video “Blind’s What if?” As my eyes pierced the tv screen I envisioned myself doing those tricks and even breaking them down as to what I could eventually try.
By fourteen all my friends had given up skateboarding. I was alone skating by myself most of the time. What attracted me to skating in the first place was being outside with all my homies pushing each other to become better. Sadly, I ended up putting my board down as well. In my four year absence I began writing & recording my own music. The same attitude and fearlessness learned through skating had translated into my writing. When I turned 18 I moved to South Florida for college. I couldn’t help but see all the spots I could do tricks on & eventually bought myself a new board. I had remembered all my tricks from before and my love for skating was till there if not stronger.
In the last seven years I’ve been building on what I know. It has taken me to places where I’ve skated with professionals, even become friends with some. Now at twenty five I find myself teaching kids how to skate in schools & summer camps. That’s right, I get paid to skate. I interact with kids who are the same age I was when I picked up a board for thefirst time. The sensation is surreal.
Skateboarding opened up my mind in ways I would have never imagined. It has allowed me to see life from a different perspective. If you fall get back up and try it again. Try again and again, until you make it. That has become one of the most profound and sound lessons in my life. It has not only instilled in me courage, but the discipline and drive to pursue a career in art. Now, I own a recording studio and teach kids how to skateboard for a living. What more could I ask for? My advice is to pick up a board, a paintbrush, or a microphone; whatever it is that brings you that passion and do it purely because of the love for it. You never know where it will lead you.