Bessy Black-eye

Jessica Redmond a.k.a. Bessy Black-eye #79: (Retired in 2013)

FeaturedSkater_20130225_Bessy1I am a mom of three beautiful kids, and I am also a doula. So, when my I heard about roller derby starting in the area, my first thought was not to join. My plate was full and I was busy with my family and helping other families. But, about six months later my husband, without me knowing, arranged for my good friend Natty Dread to pick me up for a practice. He borrowed gear for me to use for a couple weeks, and he took over kid duty. I found myself being shoved out the door by my husband as he held the baby and the other two kids waved goodbye to me. I sped away in the car with Natty while thinking I will give it a try, but I don’t think I am going to like it.

Well, I didn’t like it – I LOVED it. I had found something that challenged my mind, body and soul. I quickly was consumed by watching bouts on YouTube, reading every blog about it and talking about it non-stop. Three years later, I am still challenged in every way. I work all day, get the kids fed and in bed, and then sit down to the derby pile, or rush off to practice. But I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I have found a group of women who I love and am lucky to have in my life. We would do anything for one another on and off the track. These women have become an extension of my family. My kids love everyone one of these ladies and talk about Miss Pain or Miss Killer with such endearment. Luckily all my kids’ teachers know that these are derby names!

I didn’t think that I had room for derby in my busy life, but, little did I know, I needed it. It has made me a better mom, wife and person. I have an outlet to get out my frustrations and then be able to come home feeling energized and ready for what tomorrow will bring.

The love of derby has rubbed off on my three kids and all are aspiring to be apart of the team someday. All three have their full gear and are learning the basics of skating and derby. My husband does sometimes kick himself for pushing me out the door into the arms of roller derby, but he is also my biggest fan and likes to brag about how he is responsible for it all, too.


Bessy Black-eye playing with a broken nose… if that ain’t tough, we don’t know what is!