How I got started refereeing soccer (Part 1)

This is where I would rather be.

Back in October, my best friend DB and I went to St. Thomas for vacation.  I hadn’t been on a real vacation in so many years, so a week relaxing on the beach and snorkeling in crystal clear waters had a life-altering effect on me.

I got over my fear of fish, I learned to snorkel without panic whenever a fish came near me (a huge hurtle for me) and I learned to really relax on vacation.

When we left at the end of the week, we desperately didn’t want to return home.  Going back to work was hard. For a couple weeks after my return, I got really depressed. Why am I here, when I could be there? Why do I put up with this crap at this stupid job? I have no boyfriend, no kids at home, just a couple dogs and friends to keep me here. But I could just sell all my stuff and head south.

I started searching the Web for a job in St. Thomas. I found one that I would love, but they weren’t willing to even pay for my trip down to interview, so I was quite sure they weren’t willing to offer much of a salary, and the Virgin Islands are expensive.

The thing that kept me in my current job is health insurance. Lots of people chuck all their worldly posessions to go live on an island, but they mostly work as servers or bartenders. Nothing wrong with that, but those jobs usually don’t offer health insurance. Without it, I’m screwed.

Drew Carey’s quote kept coming back to me:  “Oh, you hate your job? Why didn’t you say so? There’s a support group for

that. It’s called EVERYBODY, and they meet at the bar.”

I needed to get over myself. So I did some soul searching. I’m stuck in this job for now, but I need to find something outside of work about which I’m passionate. My trip sparked my fascination with coral reefs, but that’s not

really something I can just do. I could go back to school and be a marine biologist, but in order to do much with any kind of biology you really need a Ph.D., and I’m just not interested in doing that.

My other passion is soccer. I went to the library and checked out books on corals and soccer. The coral turned out to be nice reading material, but it wasn’t likely to hold my attention long enough for the Ph.D. But soccer was something I could get into.

Obviously, I’m not going to be able to play soccer for a living — I’m old, I’m slow and I lack the talent. But when I played in my Sunday afternoon women’s league at a local park, I started paying attention to the refs. I spoke to one girl who was reffing, and she was so excited. She told me how to get certified and who I should talk to about it. She said it pays pretty good money, it’s fun and there’s a shortage of women referees.

Though I was terrified that I don’t know enough about the game, knowing I was going to be certified in February helped get me through the winter.

More to come later.


2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by soccerdawg on June 8, 2009 at 5:41 pm

    A note to readers: I’m still learning this WordPress stuff, so if the pages don’t look so great, rest assured, they’ll get better.


  2. Posted by ATL on June 22, 2009 at 2:20 pm

    Ah, so that’s how your reffing came to be. Way to go, you. Channeling your interest and passion until you CAN move to the islands. I’m right there with you!


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