The summer I turned 12 I won Wimbledon.
Let me explain.
My mother had recently discovered tennis. In her enthusiasm she signed me up for a week’s worth of tennis lessons.
Thankfully, a male friend from school had also been enlisted in the program and we fell in love with the game together. (Years later, I also found out that this friend had a wicked pre-puberty crush on me as a consequence of all the time we spent together, but I digress. That is another post for another time and perhaps, another blog entirely ).
Once the week was over, my friend and I decided that we’d meet daily and train for our own version of Wimbledon. Being prone to angry outbursts, he adopted the court name “John McEnroe”. Naturally, I became “Bjorn Borg”.
We met nearly every day that summer for a serious hour or two of singles. We got better at serving. Our volleys increased in length. Our friendship grew stronger. And the holidays culminated with ‘Borg’ beating ‘McEnroe’ in two straight sets. At least that’s how I remember it; my friend may disagree.
The summer came to an end and we moved on to different schools. I stopped playing tennis and took up rowing instead.
But I’ve never forgotten my love of the sport. I still watch it on television. (Hooray for Eugenie! Canada’s first player to make it to a Grand Slam final!). And even venture down to the local court with my children for an occasional game of ‘whack the ball’. (The game we play is more like ‘dodgeball’ than tennis, but it’s fun and it gets us moving as a family, so I’m okay with that for now).
This story is just a long-winded way of sharing some exciting news with all of you.
As of last month, I’m the newest contributing ‘Performance and Training’ blogger on Venus William’s website! Her blog, EleVenbyVenus is all about empowering women athletes (both professional and ‘everyday’) to be the best they can be. To be an ‘eleven’ rather than settling for being a ‘ten’.
I’m thrilled and grateful for the opportunity. (And not a little bit intimidated by my co-contributors who’ve been doing this for many more years than I have.)
I’d love it if you’d take a minute to check out my first two contributions to the site (and see my bio pic alongside those of Tony Horton and Brendan Brazier ).