Where is the Wrestling Room? Rebecca’s Story
Try googling up the word “wrestling.” There is a good chance that professional wrestling (WWE) will pop up. Aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand that is NOT the wrestling that I am talking about. Sorry, this is not about professional wrestling, where major corporations pay actors money for “athletic theatrical performance,” as Wikipedia calls it.
What I am talking about is real wrestling, the ones that you see with high school, college, and the Olympic teams. It’s the type of wrestling where the outcome is not pre-determined, where an unseeded wrestler could work their butts off in the wrestling room to potentially beat a state champion.
As you might have guessed from the name and the color scheme of this website, this is a blog about girls and women’s wrestling. To be specific, high school wrestling such as folkstyle, freestyle, and Greco-Roman.
To understand who I am, you first have to hear the story of how I started wrestling. Now a bit of contextualization here, I did not come from a wrestling family, nor did I know a friend who wrestled. Heck, I have not seen what a wrestling match looks like until I reached high school.
My first time stepping into that humid, yet somewhat empty wrestling was around March of my freshman year in high school. I know that most people usually do not join a winter sport in March (wrestling is a winter sport in my high school). But due to some complication with getting my physical and athletic clearance, I was only able to join my school’s wrestling team after the season was over.
I had no idea what the coach looked like, no idea who all the other wrestlers were, what’s more, I didn’t have a 100% certainty of where the wrestling room was located (Wrestling did feel like a Cool Kids’ secret club to me at that time). One that I did know, though: I want to be a wrestler.
After I opened the wrestling room’s door, it didn’t take long for me to recognize that there are not many wrestlers, let alone girl wrestlers, in my high school’s wrestling team. Besides one other senior girl, I was the ONLY girl in the room. I’m sure the others could visibly see my awkwardness as I slowly made my way to where the coach was sitting.
The rest of the day went by like a blur. After getting the practice schedule, writing my name and email down for Coach, I asked a few questions about what to bring to practice and what I need to do to join. I wasn’t able to watch much of the wrestling practice because I had something else to take care of. Maybe it was a good thing that I didn’t have to know the hellish practice that I was about to endure (and was not prepared for) the following days.
Now my first practice was a whole different story to tell, but this is not the end of the story since I still had to explain to my parents what wrestling was. Buying my oh-so-newbie wrestling shoes, knee pads, hearing how my friends and relatives reacted when they heard that I became a wrestler are all something that I had to go through as I juggled my first experiences with wrestling.
So, why did I create this blog. Don’t worry, I didn’t create this blog so that I can babble about my life story and dramatize an oh-so-glorious wrestling journey (which it is not). I want to be that digital role model for my past self, who frantically searched up her questions about being a girl in this male-dominated sport.
As of now, I’m just an average wrestler, having not won states nor nationals. My desire is that maybe there will be one new girl wrestler out there who received help from my blogs and finds someone who knows their joy and pains as a fellow girl. Nevertheless, I don’t know everything about wrestling, but I’m willing to listen to your voice as well.
Let’s build an online community for girls wrestlers, a place where we can say “here we belong.”Rebecca L.