I scored a try yesterday. My first. A Zulu, if you will (though I wouldn't because I only get naked for Corey). As soon as it happened, I turned around to the girl who didn't tackle me and started jumping up and down yelling, "I never did this before!!!!! This is my first try!" She looked slightly less excited than I did.
I heard Big Perm cheering for me from the sidelines, because she understood the monstrous significance of that try. I have played rugby since September, 1999 (nearly a decade) and never once scored a try. The rest of the day people asked how I was and I said, "I scored a try!" and they shrugged like it was nothing. Then I said, "It was my first!" and they thought I meant my first that day. I had to repeatedly ram home the idea that yesterday was the first moment I had earned points in a rugby match.
When I was finishing my manuscript for graduate school, I wrote this of a dream I repeatedly dream:
In my dreams every night after practice, I would dart across the tryline and touch the ball down.
In the dreams, I was filled with terror as I ran near the white paint. Time slowed and I looked right and left. I was always wide open, received the ball with a wide running lane. Sometimes, in the dream, a teammate stood near me waving me forward. I caught the ball in my hands, tucked it under my left arm, and dove. Then, nothing.
I stood in the try zone waiting for everyone to realize what had happened. The monumental occurrence. Katy, after years of struggling, achieved the improbably, impossible, inconceivable thing. But no one ever noticed. They took the ball from me and ran over to center field to kick off and I woke up. I was always soaked in sweat with my fists clenched after the scoring dream. When I had it, I woke up feeling empty and sad because I had stopped believing it would happen.
But I don't have to dream this dream anymore and it didn't happen like that at all! The score came from a series of passes. It came from my team all working together, and instead of feeling really excited for myself (that came later) I felt an overwhelming rush of togetherness, of working as a part of a larger whole. It felt like life. I loved it!
Then I drove back to Pittsburgh and Talbert bought me a shot and, even though I don't drink liquor because it makes me upset, I enjoyed it and went to bed completely satisfied.