Training Diary – Time to be grateful again

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While on the job yesterday, I was inadvertently and fortuitously reminded that I had a lot to be grateful for.

It’s been a while since I put it out there and I know it’s a practice that helps deal with life’s tougher times. Since my training is just as much about balancing mind and spirit with heart and body, it feels like it’s time to be grateful again.

I am indeed grateful for the life the goddesses have blessed me with. For while life’s struggles will always present themselves from now till the end of time, I swim in an ocean of love while dealing with those struggles head on…

Every day I’m reminded of just how lucky I am when I see the brilliance of my partner’s soul, the glory of my daughter’s spirit, the impishness of my cat’s being.

Every day I am in awe of the plenitude of our first world lives even as I navigate the guilt of wallowing in it with nary an understanding of poverty or hunger.

Every day I live with the unbearable truth that tomorrow it could (and indeed, eventually will) all come crumbling down to the never ending march of time.

So I guess I’m grateful for the timelessness of today.

Kaliamman Vazhgai

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Training Diary – When the poisons start upsetting the balance

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Dang, when you work full-time as a grunt for your city’s school district while navigating life as a bumbling family man, daily workouts occasionally present themselves as a challenge.

Motivation is so very easy to lose.

More pertinently, numerous daily poisons always present themselves as such easy aids to help deal with the struggles of life.

It’s always a tricky act, maintaining that balance.

Occasionally, the poisons start upsetting the balance.

Coupled with an injury, it’s enough for a person to take stock of lofty, but undying, athletic goals.

And focus on the more immediate, and likely far more important, goal of finding balance in life again.

Training Diary – when our inherent fragility sucker punches us

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Threw my back out this morning.

Not badly, but still.

It really sucks.

A combination of trying a new workout two days back with a ground ‘n’ pound bag, shitty hydration, daily poisons (of course), the sudden onset of below freezing weather in Minneapolis (thanks climate change), and a shitty nights sleep had me get that humbling, literally breathtaking, twinge while I got up wrong from the couch this morning after my morning coffee.

It’s healing better this time around (seems to be an annual thing).

But I get depressed when I don’t train and get soft around the midriff.

So I decided to slow dance to music with some defensive movements inspired by kalaripayattu (look it up if you care). I could only manage about 15 minutes. Really all I wanted was to just confirm to myself that despite the shortness of breath, the ribs getting tightened, and the clearly torn muscles and tendons of my middle back…that I could still move with a moderate amount of grace and confidence (helps with defense I feel).

And I daresay I might have just found another workout. A physically less stressful one for sure, but one that actually requires more focus on breathing and balance due to the temporary fragility imposed on my back.

It still doesn’t justify the beers I’m going to swig or the ciggie I’m going to smoke to numb the daily demons.

But whatever…at least I drove away fear for a brief moment.

My retirement hobby might just be the hunt…

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I know I must commit to the noble grind of life.

I know that until my daughter is ready to fly and my soulmate has gotten sick of me, I must find my peace in this noble grind.

I do so because I know it is my salvation.

But when my golden years set in…

Indeed as the noble grind loses its necessity…

Well then, salvation alone might not cut it.

Love is all, but might still not be enough.

Then every fibre of my being might start quivering for my participation in divine feminine balance.

And the hunt might commence and never end.

One morning, I decided to kill a rapist when I was a very young man…

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A lifetime ago and a universe apart, someone very dear to me, a soul far superior to me, trusted me enough to tell me her story.

So the next morning, completely of my own volition and unbeknownst to this great soul, I proceeded to kill the rapist.

Planned for it through the night and everything.

All went as I envisioned it would.

He fell at my feet.

Admitted to it and practically begged me to liberate him.

I walked away.

Was I scared? Honorable? Disgusted? Or all that and much more?

All I know is this.

I’m 99% sweetheart and 1% psycho.

And, to this day, I don’t know which part of me regrets letting him go more.

I train for the great battle ahead…

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I might say that I train so I may, some day, fulfill some unrequited teenage dream of combat sports glory.

I may couch it in the language of self realization.

I may even realize, through sheer luck and happenstance, some far fetched fighting dream of little consequence.

But truly, I train for the battle ahead and the battle of our daily lives.

The ultimate battle for the soul of humanity and perhaps even this earth itself.

The battle against patriarchy.

The battle against sexism.

The battle against toxic masculinity.

I repeat.

The soil of humanity must be watered with the blood of misogynists.