I’m hearing Phil Collins in my head as I think about this Daily Prompt
I didn’t like school at all. I was good at some subjects but others I felt were not things that we should be graded on and unsurprisingly these were the ones that I was not so good at.
The thing that I was worst at was undoubtably physical education. I remember a very early experience being in a running race at school aged about 6 years old. I saw two teachers laughing at the way I was running , pumping my arms as I’d seen athletes on television do because I thought that was what you were supposed to do. I was a very shy child anyway and after that anything that involved a public display I wanted nothing to do with.
I’m also totally uncoordinated, I couldn’t learn to skip with a rope properly and was singled out for attention in this area. My vision without glasses is not great so I spent my PE periods either not being able to judge the speed of balls and missing them entirely if I wasn’t wearing my glasses or ducking for fear of being hit by one if I was. I was the original “Can’t bat, can’t throw” kid. The only ball sport I enjoyed trying was hockey which we learned for a few weeks and then never touched again as far as I can remember. I wasn’t good at it but I did manage to hit the ball a few times and enjoyed the “thwack” of the ball hitting the wood. I also have a fear of falling so balancing on beams and any kind of jumping was a nightmare to me. Sympathetic classmates would change places in the line with me so that I was always at the back of the queue but occasionally sharp-eyed teachers would find me out and try to make me do it. This would usually make me upset and they would eventually leave me alone or send me to run round the oval instead. This was not so bad, I ran slowly and missed a lot of class time.
Swimming was another fear. I didn’t like to put my head underwater and it is a problem to try to swim when you can’t really be sure where you are going. My mother used to swim wearing an old pair of glasses but I just wanted nothing to do with the pool so I have to admit I often appeared with a note from my mother to say that I couldn’t go to swimming because of “ladies problems”.
When we went roller skating I fell over so hard that I was too dizzy to go back onto the rink and the teacher excused me. I was an unfit child I suppose but I just don’t like doing any exercise until it hurts, especially group exercise. I have a hard time understanding why people find gyms fun. I’m happy to go for a nice long walk but don’t ask me to play team sports or get hot and sweaty and sore in a gym and for God’s sake don’t let a TV personal trainer anywhere near me because they make my blood boil.