I’ve been thinking about how to write about this for nearly two days now, and have not come up with anything really great. So, in the spirit in which this blog is intended, I will just pour my thoughts out, honestly, and hope they make sense.
I lost my fight; the ref stopped it after a minute and twenty-three seconds into the first round.
I’ve gone through a whole emotional rollercoaster about this. Take the seven stages of grieving, and apply them to a competition, and that’s more or less what I’ve been experiencing.
Let me lay it out, as best I remember, first of all.
I started going through the whole process that lead to the fight, but I’ll summarize, because I’m really just avoiding the issue, I think. We drove down, I weighed in, I waited a long time (I was the 11th fight), and I went down to the ring. I felt good.
I get back up. I won’t lie…that hook HURT, but I was still coherent, and man, was I not happy. I wanted another shot.
I didn’t get it. The ref stops the fight, sends me to the doctor, who runs me through a series of tests, all of which I pass. But it doesn’t matter, because they’ve called the fight.
My initial reaction was frankly, one of crushing disappointment. I was upset, horrified, embarrassed, and pissed. I felt that I let down my Kru, my teammates, my students, and myself. I felt like a failure.
The longer the night wore on, the more I got over that. Another day or so of travel and time helped more.
As cliché as it may sound, I think the ref made the wrong call. I was not done. I was ready and able to keep fighting. If nothing else, I dropped HIM with a punch to the head first, so we were even. Sure, he had one more knockdown on me, but a kick in the chest isn’t going to cause me brain damage unless this guy has some AMAZING powers. Not power. Powers.
This is not, let me be clear, to take a thing away from my opponent. He was big, tough, and hit hard. If the fight had kept going, he might have won. Hell, he might have knocked me out. But I honestly think that I could have beaten him too, had I had the opportunity.
On the other hand, I got in there and did it.
I would do it again, in a heartbeat. It was the most fun I’ve ever had with most of my clothes on.
I learned a lot. You wouldn’t think you can learn much in one minute and twenty three seconds, but you really can, I promise. And, for the record, that’s a lot longer than it sounds like when the fists start flying.
I will probably write more about this tomorrow—for now, I just wanted to get this initial write up on paper, since a lot of people have been asking. Further thoughts will follow.
Oh, and this: the outpouring of support I received from students, teachers, friends, and family, both before and after this event, was absolutely, positively, amazing. People were calling, emailing, and texting, all giving me support and encouragement on both ends. It was absolutely wonderful, I feel blessed by all of you.
Next time, however, the check goes in the “win” column.