Happy birthday, Dr. Seuss!
Dr. Seuss is dead. He actually died when I was in college, and since he is one of the most famous and beloved alums from my college (Dartmouth), the campus went crazy sad and held a 24-hour vigil where people read his entire oeuvre. (I love that I can use the word "oeuvre" in reference to a body of work that includes "One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.")
But it is his birthday today. If he were alive, he'd be wicked old, but the world would be a better place, because he was awesome, and his stories still are. So, happy birthday, Dr! Wherever you are, I hope the Sneetches are nice to each other, star-bellied or not, and that no one needs to speak for the trees. (Actually, when I was in college, there was a movement to change our mascot to the Lorax, in honor of the doctor. No such luck. We are still the Big Green.)
Okay, camp. Today Felicia, Alaina, Emily and I had a debrief meeting about the women's grappling camp. Suffice it to say for now that we are going to come back with a vengeance and we have lots of cool ideas for the future! This idea of Alaina's has really got legs, and we think we know how to use them. More to come.
And, me. Turns out my alopecia isn't thyroid- or hormone-related. It seems to be purely environmental. My parents, who are not medical doctors, have decided that I put myself under a lot of stress this past 4 years what with my complete transformation from white collar professional to achy mat rat, and that it's finally catching up to me. Not implausible; after I quit my job, the allergies I had had for years and years disappeared completely. So it's possible that stress has caused this, though there's no evidence. Doesn't really matter. I'm still bald on part of my head, regardless of why. I got some good news though: a friend of mine from CrossFit who just became a board certified acupuncturist told me there is a treatment for alopecia. So I'm going to meet with him later this week and see what's what. I'm incredibly relieved, because as I tried to convey before, I'm not a big fan of that steroid treatment. I'm cautiously optimistic!
I'm also wrecked. I'm stepping up the intensity of my training in preparation for the PanAms (which are at the end of March), and it's very tiring. It's a good tired, though. Isn't that the phrase? But the best part is that I think I finally have my head out of my ass where competing is concerned. Two things happened to facilitate this. First, some of it I worked through at the camp. We kept repeating "Leave your ego at the door. Leave your ego at the door," and it finally dawned on me that I can blah blah blah all I want to about my ambivalence regarding competing having to do with not wanting to tap into the aggressive part of me, etc, etc, but the fact of the matter is, at least part of my ambivalence is because I don't want to get clobbered in public. So much for leaving my ego at the door.
So that was a turning point that made me realize I was full of shit and had to knock it off, and that competing was the way to do that. And then a conversation I had with Cristian helped make it palatable. Lucas Leite, for those of you who don't know, is a world champion many times over. He comes to New Breed sometimes to train, and he is here now getting ready for the PanAms himself. "Leite" means "milk," and last Thurs when he was at the academy, he trained the entire time wih Rodrigo, his teammate who lives at New Breed. Cristian and I were joking that we needed to tell Rodrigo not to hog the milk next time. But Cristian did get to roll with him a little bit, and he just shook his head; Lucas is in another solar system from the rest of us. It's what Cristian said after getting worked by Lucas that really stuck with me. He said, "Dude, when I get dominated like that, it just motivates me to work harder, because I'm reminded of how good it is possible to be."
And just like that, I felt something shift. I will still be nervous to compete, but right now I'm feeling excitement rather than dread, because if I get clobbered, I'm finally in a place where I'll be able to get motivated to get better because of it.
At least, that's what I'm telling myself. I'll keep you posted.