Oh Geez…

That’s right, I’m a mid-westerner now – so now I say things like “Oh Geez” and “Dontcha Know.”

Actually, I caught myself exclaiming “Oh GEEZ!” the first time I watched Fargo whilst in Australia and “Dontcha Know” somehow crept into my lexicon many years ago…. Albeit not as regularly. I’ll blame it on the lady from Wisconsin that watched my daughter as a baby and my BFF from Michigan. Though, to be fair, I don’t actually recall Dane ever saying those phrases haha.

All that being said… Oh Geez… I hurt.

I worked my first three shifts this week. The first day was HELL I tell you… in as far as how my body reacted to the physicality of it all. That day it dawned on me that I hadn’t worked the floor in over 4 years. My last job was strictly a desk job and the one before that, though in a similar field, was also mostly a desk job. Certainly didn’t have to be on my feet any more than I needed to be.

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My fitbit stats right after getting off of work on day one

My feet were on fire and my back ached like crazy at the end of day one. Day two was a bit better as I acclimated, but also wore gel inserts in my shoes and a back brace. My god I feel like I’m getting old… Day three, I felt even better afterwards. Slowly but surely getting used to 8 hours on my feet. So glad it’s not currently 12 hour shifts like I was otherwise used to previously!

Now I’m on day two of my four days off… and owwwieee… my knees… and …uugggh… everything hurts now that I’ve been sitting down again! I told myself that I would stay up and active while being off  – yet I lied to myself and now look what I did. LOL

Next week will be crazy with two days on, one day off, three days on… then another random shift later that next week I think… Then, thank goodness, I’ll be done with training and will go to my regular part time hours which will be every OTHER week for 4 days in a row. Those stretches I’m sure will be just as exhausting by the end… But hopefully I will have gotten myself much more accustomed to the activity and have ten days between to recover… Phew! (Suffice it to say I am soooooo glad right now with the decision to go back to work only on a part time basis and to choose the 4 day every fortnight position (they originally offered me the other opening that had more shifts, but then they told me about this one in case I wanted to make the choice.))

In any case, pray for me ya’ll… That I heal enough before returning next week LOL

Fuck, man (or “my feelings taste like donuts”)

…All around “fuck!”

I’m feeling much better about the Wyatt issue from the past two posts… buuut…

I’ve got two things to bitch about and then I promise, off of the downer posts again for a little while. 

First, ok, get this: when I saw Wyatt has two facebook accounts the other day, I noticed we have a mutual friend. When I got back in touch with her years ago she said they weren’t in contact and hadn’t been in a long time, though she was aware he was on facebook. Now they are. This is the same girl that was BFFs with him back in the day and for loyalty to him did not let me know he had been cheating on me any of the times he did it. 

I post a lot of my blog posts on facebook… blocking out certain groups, but I don’t block her.

Now I am petrified that she may have passed along information about this blog to him and the fact I clearly write about him (though his name is changed, she would easily recognise him.)

Goddamit! I mean… FUCK!

Second, I have been eating like crap the past two weeks like “Oh, hello feelings… you taste delicious.”

In case you’re wondering: my feelings taste like donuts and Vanilla Coke.

It’s caught up to me and I feel like shit now. After packout this week I will be sure to get down to kickboxing and BJJ and for the love of Christ stop eating pastries and candy corn.

On that note… I promise profusely again to give you happy thoughts tomorrow LOL 

Intense As…

I have a new friend you guise. Another American that recently moved here, and we have so much in common, it seems. I went to her house yesterday for an Art date (Just sit around and chat while being creative – it’s been a good 7ish years since I’ve had a friend to do that with.)

We got to talking about stuff… as you do… learning about each other’s parents, childhood, past relationships. We talked about blogging and our other creative endeavours over the years.

One thing she said that struck a chord with me is that even though she has had some dramas in her life, she feels like she hasn’t had anything so intense as stories such as David. (I am of the opinion that some of her experiences could be close if not on par with much of my drama…)

I’ve always felt like my life is relatively drama-free compared to other people. At least, maybe, events having been spread out enough that it doesn’t feel as frequent in nature. Sometimes I now think I wish I had more to draw upon for my writing, haha… though I’m sure at the time I wouldn’t appreciate further dramatic events.

I told her I still have a hard time thinking and relaying the fact that I’ve been in abusive relationships and situations – actually calling them as such –  because I know there are women who have had it worse than me, or for longer term than me.

I especially struggle with saying Wyatt was sexually abusive – though I know deep down he had the control and it started as such. Sometimes it feels as though there is some grey area there. I got to a compliant stage and did as was expected. I believed it was right for our relationship after awhile. Sometimes I still feel some fault for that. It wasn’t what I wanted, but I was compliant. I convinced myself eventually that I did want it all. I embraced the “promiscuity.” Sometimes it almost physically hurts to say those words and admit that it wasn’t always my choice; I wasn’t always in control of my own body, or that I was manipulated.

Wyatt was abusive overall. I have no need to explain other events right now – it’s well enough explained in older posts and in my book… But I at least didn’t feel in actual danger with him. If it had gone longer term than the two years I was with him, if it had escalated as we got older, I have no doubt it would have gotten worse and eventually I may have found myself feeling in more immediate danger…

I always call Wyatt “my abusive ex” in real life now because I don’t prefer to use his first name. I referred to him as such to my friend, and then realized after detailing events with David that she might be confused – so I explained in the moment.

As she stated, David drama was intense. David was a whirlwind of just a few weeks and I was married so I never thought of him as an “ex.” We never actually started a relationship as such. But he actually made me feel in danger. He’s the reason I finally took up martial sports; because there is still a fear – remote though the chances may be  – that I would run into him again one day. It hadn’t occurred to me until she stated it that there would be other abused women that think that my story is worse than theirs. I suppose it is the physicality of it. Types of abuse the abused feel they can rationalize away easier; emotional, verbal, and sexual abuse in relationships are harder to wrap our minds around – especially when comparing it to physical domestic violence.

Sometimes I think “If only I had other dramatic events to write about for my blog…” Sometimes I feel like maybe apologizing to you guys for making loops around to the same topics and the same men frequently. On the other hand, people seem to respond well to these stories… My friend said that I am open and make it relatable… so I suppose that’s why.

I’d apologize for writing about Wyatt and David again, but you know… Deep down I’m glad it wasn’t worse. Deep down I’m glad I don’t have further past drama to have lived through and to write about. Deep down I know I was abused, though I still sometimes try to rationalize to myself that it wasn’t that bad.

Deep down, I am still scared of David and I have no other outlet than to tell my stories… and then go kick a punching bag.

“Well… Thanks for entering.”

Today was the Jiu Jitsu comp… I stayed the whole day which was from 10 am till about 5:45 pm as I was supposed to be the “first aid lady.” ….Luckily only one injury to speak of – as in one injury actually requiring special attention and a trip to the hospital (ended up being a torn tendon) as well as one illness, so it was good I stayed the whole day.

I did compete – in the women’s 70kg+ division. I… did not place. But I also didn’t go in expecting to win, so it’s all good. Though I joked that I was disappointed that I didn’t get chocolate like the kids that didn’t place in their divisions.

Ha, Coach said he’d give me some if that’s what I wanted… but honestly I know I don’t need it. Especially after I did eat big ole chocolate chip cookies with Erika afterwards:

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I did find it very cute that Coach would squat down in front of the above mentioned children, have what looked like a little heart-to-heart chat with them, hand them some chocolate, and often a pat on the back as well.

All I got was a “Well… Thanks for entering.” Haha… Just kidding.

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The ladies that placed in my division… Erika (#1) was an absolute beast and won all three of her fights!

I’d talk more about the specific fights, but … eh… I’m not in the mindset for that right now. Basically, I lost. LOL. Put in a good effort, but I haven’t been training enough the past couple of weeks… so… anyway.

My son had wanted to compete, but he broke his arm a week ago so he only came for the big group picture that Coach wanted to take… How cute is my itty bitty in his gi??

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Aaaand… here, just a couple other good pictures… including the big group picture, which is almost everybody in the club 🙂

A Spring/Summer Bucket List

I’ve been following Rosie over at Hookup Culture and she published her bucket lists for Summer and now Fall…. At the end of Summer she published an updated list with several things marked off as done.

I’ve found this inspiring – I often say I am going to do something and it either takes a loooong time to get around to it, or I simply forget about it. Perhaps if I write my own list with a deadline I’ll actually follow through. That is, if I don’t promptly forget about the list 😉 I’ll put a draft of the list in my blog drafts to keep up with… Maybe that will work 😛

Anyway, so here we go – my Spring and Summer Bucket list (catch up, I’m in Australia and it is Spring now 😉 ). I’ll put my deadline as my birthday as it is approximately a week into Term 1 of the school year which starts at the end of Summer… (February 2017.)

 

1.Master a BJJ Sweep

Let me clarify. I’m decent at sweeps when we are practicing and going step by step with a partner. The issue is I never remember what I am supposed to do while actually grappling. I want to be able to successfully pull one off while in the thick of it.

2. Lose 12-20 Kgs

I promised coach I would lose 12 kgs by end of year and then my next goal would be to lose a further 10 and so on until I reach my goal weight… I have fluctuated up and down within 5 kg range since making that deal… I don’t think I’ll make the 12 kg goal by end of year 😦 If I lose at least that much by February I’ll be pleased.

Also, to note I also want to build more muscle mass, so if I can at least tell I’ve built more muscle and become leaner in general – the scale number can be somewhat flexible.

3. Finish my rewrite and get it back on the market

Enough said.

4. Take my kids to Disney World and Harry Potter World! Yaay!

Scheduled for December 🙂

5. Read 5 new books

In their entirety – my main caveat is that I am often reading up to 5 books at a time and they either never get finished or take forever to finish. Every now and then I find books I can finish within a few days… and then those books I read repeatedly. Suggestions for something that will grab me that quickly?? 😉

At the moment I am only reading Bra Boy, a Katherine Hepburn biography, and I have ordered “Slummy Mummy” on Maja’s recommendation (she thinks I’ll relate to the character)…

6. Curb my shopping habits

Seriously. I’ve spent so much money lately.

7. Clean out and declutter my entire house

Simple living baby! Especially the kid’s rooms need this treatment – no mercy!

8. Finally sit down with Gino for a couple guitar lessons

I am such a slacker…

9. Extend in my job, hopefully on a more permanent basis

Love my job… been doing short term contracts. This is not entirely in my hands. My boss says she loves me and hopes to keep me – but it’s a trickle down effect as I am covering in someone else’s role who is covering someone else… who is hopefully going to be made permanent in the role she is in at the moment. It’s not THAT complicated, I assure you.

10. Shoot. I don’t have a number 10… it feels so uneven or unfinished somehow…. #10: Think of a number 10. 😉

Testicular Fortitude

Maja used to do martial arts as a child and teen. I used to be so jealous of her fitness level and strength. I remember her showing off one day at school – she climbed atop the tables in the hall doing push ups on her fists… the catch being that she was going them over the gap between the tables. One fist and foot on one table, the other fist and foot on the other.

I knew even if I could do a few real push ups (Hey it had been known to happen… I once in a while seemed to have random bursts of strength and could do several in gym… then other times I could barely do two lol), I was such a klutz I would have fallen anyway in such a scenario.

I was a bit jealous, but it wasn’t enough for me to, you know, actually take up a martial art. I was never very sporty. I had my moments, but not enough so to commit fully to any given sport.

Though, come to think of it, if I had followed Maja to Tae Kwon Do I might have actually beat Anneke when we sparred occasionally…. Anneke did rugby and had a brute strength advantage over me. I mean, I held my own against her… but she always won in the end.

Anyway, the other night Maja said she loved seeing me in my gi when I post pictures on facebook. While I’m doing Jiu Jitsu and not Tae Kwon Do, it makes her proud to see me taking on a martial art. It’s probably impressive enough that I am doing a sport longer term at all, honestly.

I told her that on one hand I wished I had started much earlier, but on the other hand I know myself. If I had started in High School or in my 20s, I would likely have given up when it got too hard or tiring. My motivation would have been lacking. I wouldn’t have been in the right headspace to commit.

“Right,” she said. “You definitely need to have the right frame of mind to do martial arts. You have to have real determination.”

It helps to have the knowledge that you’re gonna get your ass beat all the time, eventually the beatings will lessen as you get better… but they’ll still be there occasionally. It helps to have this knowledge and to either not care, or thrive on that adrenaline.

Well, now I’ve found the motivation and the determination. I’ve framed my mind the way it needs to be. A lot has changed since I was younger in that regard. I’ve also found a good gym and a great coach. I’ve found a group of people that, though they have no issue beating me up obviously, are good training partners. People that want each other to succeed.

Thank goodness. If I had started at a gym where the people weren’t helpful or nice I probably wouldn’t have continued.

I’m still in the getting-my-ass-beat-all-the-time stage, obviously. But it’s slowly getting better. We have a competition coming up in a few weeks, and while I do not expect to win anything at all, I have no excuse not to sign up.

Last time there was a local comp, I had literally gone to only two classes. I came to watch in street clothes as coach had encouraged me to come watch so I could see how these things work.

Well.

I got there and he told me to put on my gi.

“I didn’t bring it…. You said just to come watch.”

“Then put on my gi,” he said as he went to the closet to grab one of his spares. It’s lucky? that he and I wear the same size.

So I jumped in and got served a healthy dose of whoop-ass. It helped that I had no expectation to win, though I did at least try. It apparently helped to prove I might actually have some proverbial balls (or “testicular fortitude” as one of the guys might say, haha.)

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Me in the blue that fateful day, Haha

 

This week, we had another new girl start. Coach was trying to get her to sign up for the comp in a couple of weeks. She was politely declining, but he still has some time to convince her – so we’ll see.

Coach told her how he did the above to me – how he made me compete after just two classes, and how now I know it could never be worse than that day – at least now I’m slowly gaining more skills.

She’s also a good match for me so he wants to see us compete against each other. When sparring with the girls they are all usually “smaller than [me], been training longer, or Liz.” Haha …Liz being a blue belt that is the same size/weight category as me… but very skilled. She’s a force to be reckoned with.

Last night he put the new girl and me together to roll. She wasn’t sure what to do and was nervous about other people watching – though she has picked up quite a bit of basics already – so I asked her if she just wanted to practice a few moves or if she wanted me to fight back. We decided I’d give some force to the scenario and I gave her a piece of advice that’s been working for me: don’t worry about people watching. They don’t expect you to be skilled yet…. and just fight back. Don’t think about it too hard. Use skills you know already if you can, but otherwise just do whatever you can to get on top. Eventually, you start learning what works and what doesn’t. (And, hey, if you try to do something that’s not allowed or could injure you, coach will tell you not to do it… so still learning opportunities to be had 🙂 )

She put up a good fight, I tell you what. It took her a moment, but she really got into it. A couple of the boys that were on the sidelines lifting weights, set their stuff down and starting yelling out instructions and encouragements… Haha, they started calling out instructions to me first and she looked up and asked if it was for her or me… When they started adding my name, she said “Why are you telling her what to do??”

Hahaha…

Really, it was because I was the one on bottom at that point I think, not special favours necessarily. I think they told her some things to at some point anyway – it’s kind of a blur LOL… Either way, afterwards she said it helped motivate her with others cheering etc and made her not feel so awkward about everyone watching.

Anyway, ultimately I submitted her (yaay!)

But I told her she did really well. People were impressed. Coach was impressed, and excited at the prospect of having us grapple at the comps. By then she’ll have a few more weeks’ training… and she could very well submit me. Wouldn’t that be a boost in confidence? 😉

Here’s hoping she signs up… and shows off her own “testicular fortitude.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The memory lingers on

I was walking through Target, minding my own business and noting that they had changed the organization of the store. AGAIN. Thinking to myself that they seem to do that more often than necessary and wondering if perhaps the manager just enjoys confusing his patrons.

I passed by where the books used to be – now it’s laundry hampers and other household items. I was wondering where the heck books would be as I was nearly done with my loop around the premises. I felt like a browse through the books; I hoped they were still there.

As I came to turn to the front of the store I saw they had displayed them all across the front wall. Smack dab in the middle of my sight line was a book that made me do a double take.

Rich, I thought.

That man looks like Rich.

So I walked over to this book and picked it up without thinking. The book is called “Bra Boy” and is about an MMA fighter:

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I thought that was interesting that I would happen to gravitate towards a book about an MMA fighter, as at the same time I had a podcast playing through my earphones that was Alexander Gustafsson – a Swedish MMA fighter – telling some of his story.

But I put the book back down, thinking I shouldn’t buy a book just because the man on the cover reminded me of Rich.

I started to walk away, reconsidered, and looked back. This time I realized the man even shared a first name with him. Well, Richie VS Rich… close enough.

I reconsidered that maybe it was a sign, and maybe I should read it anyway. Maybe it would be a good read as I am trying to start learning more about MMA fighters in general.

So I bought the book. I took it home.

And now I’m thinking how long it has been since Rich died. He and I were friends… friendly co-workers more like. We enjoyed working together and enjoyed sharing a shift…. But years later his memory still lingers on for me.

I can only imagine what it must be like for his family and closer friends on a day to day basis.

I’ve written about Rich before and of other reminders I have had. (you can read about it here.)  Rich was one of the 22-a-day. Rich was a Veteran who committed suicide.

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It’s been a little over four years now, and yet, Rich’s memory lingers on for me still. I still periodically have memory prompts that brings him to the foreground of my mind. I suppose I will never forget him, even though we might have only otherwise been friends in passing.

Suicide is a wicked bitch.

R U OK? Day has just passed again here in Australia… Just another reminder that everyone needs to be asked once in awhile if they are in fact okay. A reminder to check up on your friends, veteran or no. So many campaigns around to bring awareness about suicide, even so… it seems to affect almost everyone at some point.

Currently there is a 22-a-day campaign going around FB where people are tagged to do 22 push ups for the 22 a day. Go ahead and do your push ups… bring awareness… I honestly have nothing bad to say about this… it’s just… it won’t bring Rich back. It won’t stop any of those veterans that are thinking on committing suicide today.

What might stop it is recognising some signs, and asking them if they are okay. Sitting with them, holding them… Not necessarily speaking …. Just being there for them. Letting them know you understand – or maybe that you don’t understand, but that you love them and want to be there without pushing them or being judgmental.

And, of course, helping/encouraging them to call the various crisis helplines and calling emergency services as necessary. In a crisis, whether they’ve yet taken the action yet or not, it is ALWAYS appropriate to call emergency services.