Posted: Thu Dec 11, 2008 10:17 pm Post subject: Starting up again
Ok so many of you know me from my armor thread. I figured since I was trying to work on getting my kit into some kind of shape, I should probably go to a practice and say hello to people. Not even to fight really, just meet the locals & maybe some slow drill out of armor.
For some reason when I think about it I'm all nervous and fidgety. I have a little bit of social anxiety. I'm always a bit nervous about meeting new people, but this is bordering on scary.
On one hand I considered presenting myself as a total newb, but I figured that wouldn't work well because I'm too honest to lie, I know I'll start talking and my knowledge will show, and how do I explain having a full, if super ugly, kit? So that plan is out.
I just don't know anyone here and I'm terrified of being rejected I guess. It's silly as I'm sure the fighters here are at least somewhat civil (and I've heard the fencers are an awesome group), and would at least not laugh at me, but I still worry.
While I'm not at that point yet, I worry that this fear may stop me from armoring up and getting back on the field again too. Though that will probably go away as I make friends among the fighters here.
This is going to be a much more blunt post than I usually post.
You should go and fight. You shouldn't miss practice, and you should get as much hat as you can, with the best fighters you can, as often as you can. You should give every fight 100%, and you should not get discouraged.
You should make a goal for your fighting, and stick to that goal. A good goal would be "I want to be on the field, in full gear, every weekend for a month.", another good goal would be "fight a hundred bouts by the end of January."
The best fighters have an almost pathological need to be out there, and they have a burning desire improve their fighting, and a need to win. You shouldn't talk about not being angsty about being on the field. Most experienced fighters and trainers will tell you that if you are not sure you should be on the field, you probably shouldn't.
and don't skip practice.
Go to fight, and to begin the process of becoming a good fighter. That takes a lot of dedication, and if you show that you have less than the required amount of dedication, there are people who will immediately dismiss you out of hand.
Just say what happened, and that you want to start fighting again. No one will expect all that much of you, really. Most fighter practices are thrilled to have another person; one who comes already armored and with a developed desire to fight is a gift. We all want MORE TOYS to play with.
Sometimes people are reticent at first. Many of us in the SCA also have social deficits, and can seem aloof at first. Or don't want to waste their attachment on someone they aren't sure will stay. But make it a priority to go regularly, not a decision week by week, but just the default thing to do, and I'd be really surprised if you don't have a great group of buddies in a month.
Warriors walk through fear and look it in the eye. They don't let it stop them from worthy endeavors. _________________ Martel le Hardi
squire to Meser Lyonel Oliver Grace, fostered to Sir Gaston de Clermont
I have a bit of social anxiety and have been getting help for it. One thing I have to remind myself "what is really the worst case senario here." They can't actually reject you as long as you follow SCA rules. So, you show up with the ugly kit, get armored up, ask who is doing inspections, get inspected and asked how fighter practice works around here or ask who is good at teaching. Whatever. You have an opening with the marshall person who generally takes that sort of job because they like being helpful.
Ask names before a fight. No one will fault you if you don't remember because, duh, you're getting hit in the head.
What Cunian said about SCA folk having social issues is so true! There's a whole chapter in the book American Nerd about SCA. The author makes big point about SCA being a group of nerds, a society. Those fighters are your Geeks at Arms. You have so much more in common with them than the people at the office or the store or anyone else who presses your anxiety buttons.
Well I didn't make it out last week due to other commitments, but I went to the local heavy practice today.
I didn't get armored up because I found that there is no making it work for my legs, they have to be totally restrapped before I can wear them again. I thought maybe I could get away with it once, but no.
However the knight running the practice (there's TWO here! There were none local to me when I last fought) has a workshop and pell practice on Tuesday evenings. So I was invited to come for pell practice and help getting my kit in shape for fighting till I can make new stuff. Hooray!
I think this worked out really well the way it did. I got to meet people without feeling on the spot, there was another person returning after a long absence, and I found out about another chance to swing some stick as well as get help fixing stuff.
Plus the group was small today, only 4 plus me, which is very helpful in making me more at ease around strangers.
I know you guys would probably say my first practice in armor would be considered step one of the journey, but I'm gonna call it done today. Step two will be practice in armor. I feel very proud of myself for going alone to meet strangers whose respect I desire to earn. Small victories.
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