At 40 years old, Melina knows she doesn't have a lot of time left in the ring, but she's not ready to hang up the boots just yet. She talked about that when she joined the Chasing Glory podcast with Lilian Garcia.
"I just feel like I have one or two years left in me to do wrestling still. I will always be part of wrestling somehow and will always go watch; maybe help if there's a place that needs my help, but I don't see myself wrestling in a ring for very long," revealed Melina. "Times are changing; things are different. I was always a great character so it's hard because I am such a babyface on the indies that I can't be a heel. I miss being a heel."
Wrestling has changed since Melina's hey day a decade ago, and she talks about not being able to do all of the things the younger crowd can because of her litany of injuries.
"Everyone is doing all these flips, but yeah, my body can't take that," said Melina. "Thank goodness, knock on wood my body is not bad. I don't have much pain on my ankle like when I had the ankle surgery. I have two plates and six screws on my ankle and that used to hurt a lot, but thanks to therapy and moving my ankle around a lot it's actually that I feel a lot better, but it's my knees that are killing me. Sometimes they will start clicking and they're weird so I have to make sure not to do weird stuff because I dislocated it two years ago too. It's like okay, I'm not as young as I used to be."
Many Women's Superstars like Mickie James and Beth Phoenix have returned to WWE after lengthy absences. Melina has not yet received that call and she was asked if she would be okay with not returning to WWE.
"I am okay. Maybe that plays a factor; I don't know. I am secure in what I have done," stated Melina. "It's not until recently where people were looking back at videos and matches that I have had and actually appreciating them or being able to be open about it because it was taboo to like Melina and now people are starting to like it. When people tell me that I am going to be in the Hall of Fame, I tell them that it is okay if I am not. I saw Chyna, and Chyna deserved to be in for so long I see that as proof that as someone who is even deserving to be in, I knew she was supposed to be there but she wasn't and it's okay."
Melina said she would be just fine if she never goes into the WWE Hall of Fame because wrestling alone doesn't define her. As related to that, Melina doesn't get upset or offended if fans or even fellow wrestlers don't recognize her.
"How do you adjust to regular life? How do people see you as normal? I do admit that I am okay being me outside regular life. But where it does affect me because there's people who will tell me that they are sorry they don't know who I am and they think that I am going to be offended by that or when people who are wrestlers don't know who I am and others say that it is disrespectful that they said that. But I say that I don't mind because if they don't know they don't know," said Melina.
"It doesn't offend or hurt me. I don't get angry because I am used to it but where it affects me most is relationship-wise. I am single. It does affect me where I try to be normal and then to deny that I used to be a wrestler and that you are these things and it's like, I'm not normal. I am all these things wrapped into one. It is hard to adjust who you were and who you are now. I am trying to come to come to grips with it at once even if I am part of that still or not."
If you use any of the quotes in this article, please credit Chasing Glory with a h/t to Wrestling Inc. for the transcription.
Peter Bahi contributed to this article.