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For the past two days I have been feeling sick; an obvious side effect of spending so much time getting breathed on by small, germy children. This morning I was feeling much better, but not well enough for BJJ, so I decided to go to a yoga class instead. Turns out I was not quite well enough because about halfway through class my body was like, "Hey you, sick girl, you are kind of tired, this feels kind of yucky actually. How about you spend some time in child's pose instead."
As a lifelong athlete I am really, really good at getting messages from my body. I am less skilled, however, at actually following them.
This was not a difficult yoga class. But for me, today, it was impossible. My brain really did not like that. As I sat there with my eyes closed, breathing, the ever helpful voice in my head was saying things like "Everyone must think I am so weak. The teacher must think there is really something wrong with me. I should push through anyway. This is pathetic.&qu…
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Roller Coaster

Its the roller coaster that gets me. The fact that you are just going along, doing your work, slowly climbing up, everything is going exactly according to plan, then Zoom!, down you go, fast, maybe not all the way to the bottom again, maybe somewhere halfway, but man you got there FAST! And now here we go again, back on the slow climb.
Some days it feels like you are doing everything right, you are busting your ass to accomplish all of your goals in every way that you know how, yet things just aren't going the way you want them to. On those days it is easy to get angry at the world. Don't you see I am doing my best here? Don't you see how hard I am working? OMG just get the f&*k out of my way! Stop asking for more of me! Can't you see I don't have any more??
But the thing is, that down part, it is on the track. It is part of the ride. it has always been a part of the ride. We knew if was coming, we could see it at the top of the long climb up. We didn't know…

November 20, 2018

This morning, while out walking my dog, I watched a mother put her young boy onto the school bus. "Have a good day," she said. "Listen to your teacher."

The boy, who was about five years old, replied that of course he would, although it was unclear which of his mom's wishes he was agreeing to.

Listening. So and so is a "good listener." We talk so much about it, but many of us have no idea how to actually do it., so caught up in the words inside our own head that it is almost impossible to hear anything else. Yeah I am listening to you, but not really, I am really thinking about the next thing I am going to say. I am listening to you, but not really, because even though you know an awful lot about this, deep down my egotistical brain still thinks I know better. I am listening, but not really because even though you just showed the technique in perfect detail three times, and I swore I was really paying attention, somehow when it was my turn to drill it…


"You win or you learn."
Competitive athletes love to use this phrase, especially BJJ ones. And I know it sounds like a way to make the soul crushing pain of defeat a little less awful, or maybe a way to rationalize losing to your insecure brain so you don't have to actually admit that you lost. But most cliches are true, and this one is no exception.

Whether it is on the competition mat, or simply in a regular class rolling session, I have done an awful lot of losing, and learning. I got better at defending arm bars by tapping multiple times and then going back to the dojo to drill arm bar defense. I got better at guard retention after getting tired of being smashed and learning to use my feet and hands defensively. And so on. Sometimes the lessons are crystal clear. Escaped everything but failed at getting to a dominant position? Need to work on that. Got to a good position but took too long to attack? Need to work on that. They kept getting out before you could lock an…

I'm Back...Sort of

Hello blog readers! It has been awhile, I know. Sometimes I get so caught up with mom-ing, teaching and trying to keep up with that 17 year old's leg attacks that my brain cannot be bothered to put two sentences together.

This BJJ life is hard ya'll.

But I am writing to let you know that from now on all my thoughts and brilliant ramblings will be directly posted to the MAMA Facebook page instead of here. So if you are still interested in hearing about my life please go like my page:

That is where you can read all about Maya's latest accomplishments, my "big guy smash" struggles, my obsessive love of coffee, and whether or not I think the romper is a reasonable fashion choice. (Spoiler alert, I don't.) The posts will be slightly shorter so those of you with minimal free time and short attention spans can still enjoy them…

Be Batman

I'm just going to be honest with you. We have been lied to. We have been lied to and we are still being lied to, every single day.
Oh don't get me wrong, bad shit is going to happen to us. Bad shit is going to happen to the people we care about, stuff that is simply unavoidable. Someone is going to lose their job. Someone is going to get sick. Someone is even going to die. These are the things that happen to us human beings in the course of a normal life. No matter how much we sleep, how few carbs we eat and how much meditation we do, we are going to have pain and we are going to have to go through it. There is no avoiding that.
But this other stuff? This stuff someone tried to convince us was normal?
It is bullshit. All of it.
The part about your body falling apart. About you not being able to do what you used to. About your sore back and aching knees being just "a natural part of aging." About how "everyone is tired all the time." All lies. Your back hurt…

Making Enemies

To the girl at the open mat who thought my body was a grappling dummy, I get it. You probably train at one of those giant schools in the city where everyone is constantly struggling to catch up to the two guys at the top who the instructor actually pays attention to. One of those gyms where everyone goes hard all the time, unless you are injured of course (which happens often) or you have ringworm (also a regular occurrence since guys are constantly taking off their shirts and rolling in sweat puddles). I get that we are both purple belts, and that I met you like thirty seconds ago, so of course there has to be some kind of pecking order established. I mean if you care about that. The other option would be to say "Hello new friend, nice to meet another woman who shares this crazy thing called jiu-jitsu. Lets work on some techniques together." But no, you wouldn't know about that. To you, every match is a challenge, every roll is the ADCC finals. So whatever, you establis…