"When the student is ready the teacher will appear." I recently decided to pursue martial arts for a variety of reasons. As I was talking to a friend and neighbor yesterday he revealed that he taught martial arts in college. He offered to teach me. His advice was to start stretching to prepare. So today I began the start of my new journey-I started a stretching routine. I know that in the future I will be adding to this routine, but for now this is it. I followed it up by playing around with my training sword. I practiced about four different swings. At this point I am looking to condition and strengthen my body. I need it. I don't feel like I did that much but, boy oh boy I can feel it. Some of my muscles feel like jello now.
What has led me here to this, a bit of background and information. Willow is my alternate ego and has been for many years. She is what I want to be and the best of me. What follows are the reasons that have led me to this new journey or should I say stage of my life.
The past twelve months or so I have been doing a lot of hard thinking, meditating and soul searching due to two major events. The first was the final, split with my ex-husband. He left me in 2006, I divorced him in 2007 and tried again when he sobered up in 2012. By this time I knew that it would never work and that we needed to be done. His finding a new woman and quickly marrying her was actually very hard and earth shattering for me. It left me with a whole bunch of negative emotions to work through. I felt worthless, unlovable, redundant and obsolete among other things. Not to mention I had to grieve the loss of our relationship and the loss of the man I always thought he could be along with realizing I most likely will always be single. It's taken me a full year to accept that and learn to be comfortable with it. The second although not nearly as painful event was realizing ten days ago that my baby is all grown up into a responsible man. My focal role as a parent is over. I have to step back ad let him go. Parenting just took a back seat role in my life. Now I needed a new focus. As a good friend said to me "Now you can follow all those dreams from when you where a girl." And I was left thinking "What dreams? They are either broken or completed." So more searching. What did I want to do when I was in my teens/twenties? What did I give up on or forget about?
So here I am-a forty six year old, overweight woman who desires to learn self defense via martial arts and how to swing a sword. I have always been fascinated with martial arts. Back in my early twenties I sparred with my husband and my "second husband" who were both hard core Bruce Lee and Jeet Kune Do fanatics. I loved watching all those movies with Bruce Lee, Chuck Norris, Jean Van Claude Van Damme and Steven Seagal. Here I am almost twenty five years later and I am still fascinated with the strong martial arts warriors. Probably even more. I don't know how or when I became side tracked from that. I am past fascinated I am obsessed! I have always been drawn to and admired strong, confident people most of my adult life. I have decided that must mean I need to become one.
I have many other reasons than just the fact I am obsessed. I have raised my children and need a new direction as my parenting role has taken a back seat. I need exercise as I want my body back. Sure I want my figure back and more importantly my energy, stamina and strength too. I really miss that part of me. Not to mention the fact that physical exercise improves moods. I miss being a bubbly, bounce off the walls in a good way kind of person.
I am now divorced, single, loving it and planning on staying that way. As I no longer have a man to protect me it is time to learn to protect myself. Sure I can go buy a handgun, take classes, learn how to shoot it accurately, strip it down, clean it, put it back together and get a concealed carry permit. But I also know that there will be times when I can't carry it or can't get to it. I know the best defense starts with my brain, after that it is up to my body. This makes the skills for wielding any weapon secondary for defense in my opinion.
I have come to realize that in order to survive the chaos that has been my life I have become a "warrior" in many ways already. I have a very high standard for myself and others-my morals, ethics, beliefs, etc; reflect that. As I research martial arts I have come to see that I am already following the warrior's code. It is time to round myself out by learning the physical skills I need and this will also continue to train me mentally to be the person I desire to be.
Also I have always had a very strong "survivalist" streak and consider myself a "renaissance" woman If push comes to shove I have a wide range and variety of skills and I know I can survive. But these skills will not defend me from others.
I have spent a lot of my life trying to get it together, keep it together only to have shit happen and start over. I've been through a lot, learned a lot and lost a lot. It is my hope that learning martial arts and the mind frame that goes with it will be that which I need to be the person I want. I want to keep a clean house, a nice yard, pay my bills and be financially secure. I also want to be able to take care of myself physically and mentally. I want all the good things, parts and habits that I had before becoming a meth head back. I am so effing sick and tired of knowing what I need to do and not being able to cross over to the actuality of doing it. I have been at this standstill for way to long and way to many years. Every time since 2006 that I have finally started to live again something has come along and taken that away from me. Events that put me into a sedentary lifestyle. Whether it was wham-bam you now live in a hospital with your daughter or a slow spiral into depression due to physical exhaustion. I have lost the will to take care of myself, my home, my yard, my finances etc; at least three times in my life and trying to get it back this time has been almost impossible. I HATE IT!!!!