Posted by: karenevoss | January 31, 2016

One Year Later…

On January 31, 2015 at 7pm, the South Shore YMCA (SSY) closed their doors for good. It’s been a year and so much and so little has changed during this past year.

Some of us remain bitter and angry for the decision the Metropolitan Milwaukee YMCA made as staff lost their jobs and members lost their home and family. Recently, I wrote a letter to the Metro. Milwaukee Y expressing my thoughts and emotions as I’m choosing to leave the Milwaukee Y after eight years. It’s a biggest decision I made so far in 2016, my year of change. My heart isn’t with the Milwaukee Y anymore.

A lot of SSY members left the Milwaukee Y for good either joining at another branch of the Y or finding another place(s) to work out and to sign their children up for swim lessons. I chose to stay on with the Milwaukee Y, but it hasn’t been the same. I barely know anyone and no one seems to talk in Brown Deer. There’s no sense of family and I’ve had communication issues. I spoke to a member of the staff to learn how the Milwaukee Y became so far in debt by building new Y’s on credit. Currently, they’re suffering financial issues once again and I don’t want to experience another Y closing or programs being cut. They fell short of their campaign goals because people aren’t willing to invest in a company that can’t manage their money (my thought) or they’re former or current Y members that don’t wish to give anymore. How much did they lose when they shuttered the doors to the SSY? How much did they lose when they sold off other Y’s as part of their bankruptcy plan?

I’m looking forward to seeing former SSY members at Xperience Fitness. Xperience charges less and has everything I mainly require…a 25 yard pool (saltwater too, bye chlorine),  weight training equipment, a fitness center, and group X classes. I have already seen a few and it brings a sense of familiarity and family support back.

I hope wherever the SSY members ended up that they can put the closing of the SSY behind them. I’ve heard this in the song “Scars” by Jonny Diaz:

“Praise God we don’t have to hide scars
They just strengthen our wounds, and they soften our hearts.
They remind us of where we have been, but not who we are
So praise God, praise God we don’t have to hide scars”

Our scars may not appear on the surface, but don’t let them hold you back from performing at your best.

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