Student, full-time firefighter, full-time mother of two, and hockey player. It sounds like a lot to have on your plate, but one woman just celebrated her 40th birthday doing all of the above, and helped her team rank second place at nationals to boot.
Danielle Dube is finishing her psychology degree at UBC and has been playing with the Thunderbirds Women’s hockey team for four years after a decade long hiatus from the ice. The team earned the silver spot at CIS National Championship. Dube says joining the team wasn’t her plan when she started school.
It was not expected, it was not planned, I actually approached the team to be a goalie coach as I started doing some coaching with Team Canada, and it kind of turned into ‘hey why don’t you play instead!’
Helping build the team up to new heights
The Thunderbirds didn’t have the greatest record of wins, until things began to change during Dube’s first year on the team.
To end up at nationals twice would have been unheard of if you’d asked the program from 10 years ago…It was quite a big accomplishment for the team, and probably the reason why I ended up sticking around for four years, you know if that first year had gone just kind of mediocre I would have been ‘okay, varsity athlete, did that, check!’ you know, move onto something else.
Finding friends in teenage team mates
But the team was happy to have her stay, and Dube says they have been extremely welcoming of her.
Some of the girls are 18 years old coming in, so I think I’m probably the age of their parents to be honest. But the girls have been so good, they’ve been so accepting you know they just accept me as another team mate and they’re extremely understanding when I can’t make every team meeting.
As her graduation approaches, Dube plans to attend grad school for counselling, something she thinks fits well with her firefighting background.
The best reward: seeing the game through new eyes
Lacing her skates back up ten years later proved beneficial for more than just team bragging rights. The real honour? Getting to share the game with her children.
It was really great for my kids to be able to see me play because they always knew I had played hockey, but for them to actually look and say ‘my mom’s a hockey player’ was pretty inspiring.