The amount of work you put in will show
My first time stepping on the curling ice was when I was 14, while in grade nine at high school. I was already an athlete, a baseball player, which took up my summers and training through the winter. But high school provided an opportunity to join more teams, and I wanted to be on as many as possible. My father was a curler, and I remembered going to see him play when I was a young girl. So I tried it out, and among all the baseball, volleyball, flag football, and track, I became a curler.
After high school, I took a break from curling. I focused on working and post-secondary studies. It wasn’t until three years after, in my last year at Mohawk College, that I took a leap and tried curling for the varsity team. I stepped onto the ice, not having curled in three years. To my own surprise, I made the cut. All the other players had been curling since a very young age and had had proper training… What came next was an incredible amount of hard work.
For four months, I was on the ice 3-4 times a week, training with my coach and now good friend, Matt Kimber. This was in preparation for the Ontario Colleges of Athletic Association (OCAA) provincials and later the Canadian Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA) Nationals. I was on the mixed team for the OCAA Provincials and invited to play on the women’s team at the CCAA Nationals. For me, having the opportunity to attend the CCAA Nationals in Sault Saint Marie that year was like a dream. My nerves and excitement were bubbling that entire week. And I was able to showcase all the hard work I had put in at a national level. We finished the round-robin in a tie, although our last tie-breaking game was a heartbreaking loss. Ultimately, we finished fourth at national level. That was something to truly be proud of.
That year, I pushed myself to be the best I could be—in my studies and athleticism. I was a varsity player on two teams, baseball and curling, worked three part time jobs, and excelled in my studies, earning a spot on the dean’s list and receiving an Academic and Athletic Achievement award. But my proudest moment was securing the “most improved” curling award. The amount of work I put in truly showed, from the first step on the ice to the last in that 2013–2014 season.