Last Friday I was playing around with handstands, cartwheels, and somersaults, along with Nancy. We were spurring each other to try things like one-handed cartwheels. I can do one on the left, having picked that up as a kid. I haven’t yet managed to do a one-handed cartwheel on the right. After a while I decided to try handstand rolls, but they make me so nervous that instead of tucking my head and letting myself down, I allowed my feet to fall back, kept my arms locked as best I could, and landed in a backbend. I swayed forward a bit but I held the backbend. Later I did it a few more times. This was exciting because the handstand-into-backbend (the first stage of a front limber) was the farthest I ever got in Chicago Park District gymnastics in fourth grade. I am now hoping to surpass that, maybe by becoming able to stand up out of the backbend, and then I will have gotten farther than I got when I was nine. That would be gratifying. As would being able to do it as elegantly as the girl in the linked slideshow.