It’s My Party I’ll Cry If I Want To


My jiu jitsu has not been a bed of roses this year. In fact, it has pretty much sucked and I admit I have been in the depths of a raging pity party. This year it seems like it has been filled with injuries, health issues, losing my favorite training partner, and losing jiu jitsu matches.

I almost feel like it would be easier to tell you injury-wise what hasn’t’ been injured on my body this year. I think I can safely say that only my right eyelid has escaped any injury this far.

I was also having problems being so exhausted and chalking it up to a new job. My gym is 45 minutes away and I would have to pull over on the way to the gym and take a short nap. At class during warm-ups, I felt so sluggish and couldn’t keep up, rolling was worse. But I kept plugging away not knowing that I was having a major issue with an under active Thyroid.

But worst of all was my favorite training partner moved. She is the one who would tell me if the technique wasn’t quite right, would push me when I was too tired to continue, would point out if I had something caught in my teeth, and best of all would help cover up the sound of the inevitable accidental fart during training. How can I replace that?

I am the first one to admit I love my comfort zone, but Joe Wilk always reminds me that it is a good thing to get out of our comfort zones because wonderful things can happen.

So in the spirit of stepping out of comforts zones, I decided to do a grappling match in a cage. I lost. Badly. I was smothered and consequently passed out to my opponents breasts. Yes, you read that correctly. I was so gassed after a 2 minute round that in the next round I couldn’t even defend from the bottom of half guard when she shifted her weight on to me. Not only was I physically drained I was mentally drained. I don’t take loss well and to lose in that type of manner with everyone watching well it was a pretty big blow to my self-pride.

Now in the back of my head are all of these little things, injuries, health, ego, I couldn’t shake them away. The final straw was at our Sunflower State Games tournament. I knew I was going to have a challenging purple belt opponent. On our third match I ended up getting wrist locked and injured because I tapped too late, my brain just wasn’t prepared for a wrist lock. It was then that all my emotions erupted. I was mad because I was hurt, I was mad because I was under performing, I was mad that I couldn’t continue in the rest of the tournament. I was mad that everything was changing and I felt stuck. Basically, I was just very angry. The fact that I was still actively training and participating was of little comfort to me. I didn’t know what to do. I felt lost.

I texted a couple of my coaches and let them know that I had failed….again. But here’s the thing, they weren’t disappointed in me, they were disappointed for me. I realized that the only person disappointed in me was me. That was actually a hard thing to admit to myself.

 

In all reality, it’s highly unlikely that my realization will be turned into an inspirational Lifetime Movie Channel movie of overcoming defeats to return in a blaze of glory.

It’s been said that in jiu jitsu if you aren’t winning you are learning. I can honestly say that I did learn important things. Things like; how not to get smothered by boobs, tap before the wrist lock gets too painful, taking care of my injuries is a good thing, finding a new training partner is like dating and most importantly I won’t always be the best, but I can be my best.
 
I wanted to write this in hope that if anyone else feels like they are struggling that they aren’t the only one. Trust me. This is a long journey I’ve been told and there will be small detours along the way and I am ready to get back on the road to my destination.  
Author:
Kim Morris is a blue belt with Combative Sport Center in Manhattan, Kan., under Joe Wilk. She has been practicing jiu jitsu since November of 2013. She is a wife of 22 years and a mom of two boys, ages 21 and 12.

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