What Jiu Jitsu is to me, the role it plays in my life have changed several times over the years. I started Jiu Jitsu by accident but the self-defense aspect had me coming back. While in the beginning it was a daily struggle and I found myself in some of the most difficult situations I didn’t want to be in, I desperately wanted to learn how to escape them and so the journey continued. Overtime I began to fall in love with the sport, the brotherhood and family type unity that came along with it. I looked forward to going and went as much as I could. Hey imagine that, Jiu Jitsu was actually quite fun! I quickly got drawn in to the sport aspect of it and was competing as much as I could a lot of times without my team and without my coach. None the less I wanted to get better and this was the best way to gage my growth. It seemed by the end of the year I had worn myself out and was losing my confidence. After various health issues and injuries I found myself unable to train as hard as I would like or as often as I would like and therefor going in to a competition I didn’t feel I trained to win or deserved to win. I went from getting out there and playing my game to over thinking everything. The more I lost the more I felt the pressure to win as others would even say to me “you just need a win again” it would reiterate how far I had fallen. The mental blocks I had built had me defeated before I ever stepped foot on the mat.
Not wanting to recognize the loss in confidence being the issue I sought hard after where I needed to improve skill wise. I began to feel pressured that I needed to get over my past to push through to the next level on the mats. I gave up my blog hoping that by not revisiting bad moments I could achieve that. I tried to change up my rolling style and be more aggressive. I put pressure on myself to prove myself to others and meet the standards I thought they had for me. The thoughts of my journey were becoming negative and the idea that I would never be enough played on repeat through my head. The sport I had so deeply fallen in love with, my escape from the world and daily stress was now stressful in itself. As I encountered yet more medical issues and facing surgery which meant downtime I was at a loss. While out I realized it wasn’t being away from the sport I loved so much while recovering that upset me so much, it was the thought of a setback or added time without progression that upset me the most. I realized in that moment that more than anything I just wanted to enjoy my journey again! I just wanted to be back doing what I loved and love being out there doing it. I needed to do it in the way that I love doing it and how it makes me happy vs. doing what I feel I need to do to please others. If that was going to hold me back from progression I was completely okay with that. It doesn’t matter how far I grow or advance if I don’t enjoy each moment I am out there doing it.
When I watched Caio Terra’s video it hit home so hard for me. It really isn’t about how good you are at Jiu Jitsu but how good Jiu Jitsu is for you! On top of that it is what you bring to Jiu Jitsu! What unique and special piece to the puzzle you bring to your gym? When I came back I was just genuinely happy to be there. I felt great, I rolled great and I left happy! I know God lead me to Jiu Jitsu for a reason and that I am meant to help and encourage other women. To quit my blog, to feel pressure to get over my past isn’t the right thing to do. The reality is I may never get over my past but I HAVE COME SO FAR! If this is as good as it gets I would be more than okay with it as I am such a different person than I was when I started. My strength and ability to get through situations is at a level I ever knew possible. Through my blog I have been a voice for so many women and have been able to reach and encourage more than I imagined. As I prepare for yet MORE down time for one last surgery I am at such peace. While I will miss it like crazy and being going stir crazy to get back out there on the mats Jiu Jitsu will be there waiting for me when I recover. I will go back in my role God intended for me, once again enjoying my journey and everything else will happen on its own.