Christmas is over for another year and it’s one of those in-between days…the lull before new year and a time when I reflect and look back on the year that is almost over.
In some respects, I have had an awful year after losing my dad very suddenly back in May. But when I think about the year that I have had in surfing, I can only describe it as epic! It’s been so much more than I ever could have imagined! Surfing has been the constant that has helped to bring some calm, balance, fun and extreme emotional high’s during a year when I have so badly needed it.
Things never work out the way you plan or envisage them, and in my first blog post of this year, I set myself some objectives – seven things I wanted to achieve during 2014. ‘Getting a go-pro’ and ‘getting a recent picture of me standing up riding a wave’ have both been ticked off, as has one of my key targets of ‘being able to stand up consistently.’ But the niggling shoulder injury that I suffered earlier on in the year put paid to me working on my pop-up.
It’s only now when I look back that I realise that the shoulder injury almost happened for a reason.
Because of that injury, I met surfabella and have since struck up a great friendship. I was also given some great advice from Biff at the Surfing Sumo, who, after reading the post about it on my blog, gave me the opportunity of the year – to write a regular piece for the website! I also went to Boardmasters for the first time as a result of the articles….the knock on effects have been amazing!
I also poured a lot more time into my blog and started sharing it around. Whilst I set myself a goal to ‘make more of the blog’, I never ever imagined meeting some of the truly amazing people that I have met this year and friendships that I have formed. The best surfs that I have had this year have been with the people I have met like Amy from Mellow Waves and Landlocked Surfer and his family. I have also met the amazing Dolly who has got to be surfing’s biggest fan!
But the shining star amongst the friends I have made is Kelly – a landlocked surfer, who, by coincidence, lives near me, surfs with the guys at Kingsurf and loves Mawgan Porth. To attend her wedding and share her special day has to be the highlight of the year. My first surfer wedding! We have become really good friends and I’m looking forward to surfing with her in the new year..in just a few days time!
I have surfed with my cousin, surfed during the winter, been to Devon and Cornwall and surfed some new spots like Perran Sands, Putsborough and Saunton. I have had some brilliant advice and pointers which I have put into practise, and surfed with Pete from Kingsurf who was amazed at my progress despite being landlocked.
Above all, I have had a total blast! My best moments from this year have always undoubtedly involved surfing in some way.
I may not have been surfing quite as often as I wanted this year or managed the ‘pop-up’, but I’m proud of what I have achieved. Since the session where it ‘clicked’ back in March, I can stand up so much more consistently, and gradually, the move to get to my feet has got progressively quicker. Getting off my knees is going to be a hard habit to break but the training I’m doing will set the groundwork and I’m confident that I WILL manage to achieve it in 2015.
I’m not really setting a list of objectives for next year – the pop-up is really the one and and only goal. As for the rest, I’m just going to go with the flow and see what happens!
So I’m looking ahead to 2015 with massive amounts of stoke and optimism. If this year has taught me anything, it’s that you can achieve anything you set your mind to…if you want it enough. It’s also taught me to be grateful and make the most of absolutely every moment as life is so precious, as things can change in the blink of an eye.
I’m going to surf as often as possible in 2015, starting on 1st January…
…and I can’t think of a better way to start the new year than in the sea on my surfboard.
Happy new year!