Usually by the end if the year I get depressed. I’m out of my routine because of the holidays. I’m not training enough and I think back on all the goals that I had set for myself the previous year and how I didn’t accomplish all I wanted. So before I start setting big grandiose goals for myself in 2015, I thought it would be good for me to take an honest look at what I did in 2014 and try to be as objective as possible (not something that I’m particularly good at).
- I’m running the Muay Thai program for my school.
I really had an amazing coach. Kru Bryan Mossey is great instructor with a wealth of knowledge. I had some pretty big shoes to fill. I was so nervous about running the program even though I had Cory for support. But as it turns out, and to my surprise, I’m much better at teaching Muay Thai then I thought.
- I competed for the first time in almost 3 years.
This was a huge fear of mine. I’m not usually concerned whether I win or lose, but I’m always terrified of disappointing my instructors and students. With the help of my teammates, I got to compete twice as purple belt in 2014, once at US Grappling Sub Only and once at US Grappling Pendargrass. The first tournament I lost my division, which I think was good for me. I realized that my teammates and students still respected me and family and friends still loved me so there really was no need to worry. The second tournament I walked away with 3 gold medals. I finally realized that all I had to do was compete the way I roll. As my buddy David Porter says “comfort in control.”
- I got my first apartment
I know this really isn’t a big deal for a 29-year-old woman, but to me it symbolized something bigger. When I was 16, teaching martial arts as a part-time job I thought to myself, “wouldn’t it be great if I could do this for a living”. I never thought that this would be a career. I’m so happy to know that I can support myself doing something I love! It brings me so much joy and I am extremely grateful everyday.
- I coached my first fighter to a WKA Championship victory.
The waiting around sucked, but I was so proud of Adam for winning the WKA in his weight class this year. Even though I was sure he would do well, I was so nervous about cornering for the first time. I also have to give a big thanks to Dexter for being my second corner man. The fact that Adam trusted me, a 29-year-old woman, to help him get ready for a Thai tournament really humbled me. I was extremely honored and was so happy to be a part of that experience.
- My kids Jiu Jitsu program had its fifth anniversary.
I started teaching the kids program by accident 5 years ago. It was the best accident that has ever happened to me. Now my program is larger then ever and I still have 4 out of my 5 original students. I’m so lucky to get to go to work everyday and leave with a smile on my face.
- I got to train in Brazil
I got to train Brazilian Jiu Jitsu in Brazil…enough said.
- I got over my fear of the scale
This is one of my biggest demons. I have always had so much of my self-esteem wrapped up in my weight. Then my wonderful boyfriend/ strength and conditioning coach told me some great advice that finally started to sink in. “Your weight is just a number that represents the Earth’s gravitational pull on you.” Well when you put it like that…
- I was promoted to brown belt.
This was a big one. Brown belt was a belt I never thought I would receive. I was always comfortable at purple but when Master Sauer said it was time to be promoted, it didn’t really sink in until he actually put the belt around my waist. It took everything I had in me to stop the tears from running down my face in front of 17 black belts. I am so thankful to Master Sauer and all my training partners. I couldn’t have done it without you.
So looking back on 2014 I am finally not disappointed with what I have accomplished in my life and in my martial arts career. All it really took was to take an honest look at last year and to approach it with a sense of gratitude. If 2015 is anything like 2014 I will have much more to be thankful for.