Looking back on 2012

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2012 is almost over! WOW. Seems like not too long ago I was sitting on my couch, writing a couple posts about reviewing 2011 and sharing with you my favorite moments from THAT year. Now, here I am… doing it again.

This morning, as I ran on the tredmill, my mind bounced from fighting to traveling to my BFF to love… and so on. Normally, if I am at the gym, my head is where it needs to be. IN the gym! I usually just think fighting stuff and focus on what I’m working on. This morning though, my head was all over the place thinking of everything that had happened this past year. 2012 – what a ride.

I think you guys know me well enough to know that writing is a bit of an outlet for me. And so here we are.

I had such a big year. I had as many ups as I did downs… I traveled… I pushed out of my comfort zones… I  found new comfort zones… I battled myself more than I battled others… I learnt, listened and loved. It’s been a rollarcoaster. And as much as I think I’d love to change some things that happened to me, I know that this is what was meant to be.

So! Here is a review of my year! The moments that shaped me in some life changing way.

Let’s have a looky.

Bye, bye comfort zone. Hello Brasil!

The first week of 2012 I was flying to Brasil. Alone. With no real idea as to what the fuck I was going to do when I got there. I went with a purpose of doing my Moksha Yoga training, but that started a few weeks after my scheduled arrival. As I planned my trip from the comfort of my own Canadian home, I figured that if I was going all the way over there, I needed to do some sightseeing before getting down to business with training.

Wow. Well, that was ballzy. Goodbye comfort zone.

But it was awesome. I did some sightseeing, laid on the beach, and tried to learn some Portuguese. I wandered, got lost, got scared, and got brave. I missed home but I embraced my challenge. What a way to start the year.

Loosing Deirdre to Cancer…

After almost a year of battle, and even a fair warning that the end was coming, I still couldn’t believe that we lost the fight. My BFF gave it her all and fought so hard, for so long. I will never forget that last week of being with her. It was thee hardest week. The longest week… the shortest… the most empty… the most full… most hurtful, confusing, strangest time I’ve ever experienced. Every emotion. How to even explain?

I said goodbye on Feb. 2, 2012.

And I miss her all the time.

Training in New Mexico at Jackson-Winkeljohns MMA gym...

I always wanted to go to Albuquerque and learn from the best. I just knew I had to go. So, after I said goodbye to Deirdre, I did what I do best.

I left.

I can’t decide if I was running and avoiding again (like I seem to do) or if I was just actually getting on with my dreams. Either way, I found myself in New Mexico about a month after she passed, and was soon learning from some of the best coaches and fighters in North America.

Julie Kedzie quickly became an idol to me. Obviously she is skilled, badass and tough as nails. But she is genuine. And kind. I felt like she took care of me at the gym, partnering with me and bearing with me thru things which were simple and easy to her, but that I was just learning for the first time.

I don’t think I would have stayed at Jacksons for as long as I did, if it weren’t for her. Three months of training there, changed who I was as a fighter. In big ways. I wish I could have stayed longer. And I also wish I could have gone back by now. But life happens, and expenses and money talk. All in good time, I guess. But what it comes dow to is how much of comfort zone popping experience it was. There is no disagreeing that I am a much better fighter, having trained there.

Winning fights!

October 2011 was my MMA debut. By September 2012, not quite a year later, I had fought four times. Three of those battles, I won. 2012 held wins for me. Not only for my record, but for my confidence. Each time I stepped into the cage, I felt a little more at home. I felt a little more familiar, a little more “me”… and a little more excited to do it again.

More goodbyes…

Saying goodbye is hard. And it’s scary. And it sucks when it is more what one person wants than you. This year I had to say goodbye to people who I didn’t really want to let go of. It’s a shitty feeling. Not wanting to let go, and then to feel needy and insecure in the process. Ugh.

But… I do believe we meet everyone for a reason. And something can always be taken away from everything. We might not have gotten the end result we wanted, but there is always a lesson that we can take away from the experience.

Taking a good hard look at how I slow myself down… 

I took a good look at myself this year. Lately, in fact. And decided it was time to quit slowing myself down. Man, do I self-sabotage. I ‘observe’ more than I should, when I should really be in there like a dirty shirt. I decided that I need to stop slowing myself down and being my own worst enemy. I have enough battles ahead of me, by being in the public eye (even if it IS small right now) and battling myself is not necessary. It’s time to be my own supporter, instead of my own biggest challenge. Working on this!!

Planning for the future… 

Fighting won’t last forever. I decided this year that as much as I love this lifestyle and what it gives me, I need to plan for post fighting. I use to think I wanted to open a gym and teach classes and help lead a womens team. Now, I’m not really sure that’s the path I want.

I decided that 2013 has to include some sort of eductaion and planning. I can still fight, I can still train, but I need something to fall back on. So, I took a deep breath, and went for it.

Applying to go back to school was scary. I could hear the critics in my mind before I even sent off my application. But some how I managed to ignore them. I still hear them from time to time, and I know they will likely pipe up as I actually enter into my school year in 2013… but I’m trying. And that’s better than not doing anything, right? Post fighting prep needs to begin. And so I will. Wish me luck.

H’okay! There is my year in review. My highs and lows. You now know more about me then you should. Lol But, thank you for reading.

Sending love, hugs and buttslaps…

xoxo

McDooogs

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