growth, sacrifice, Japanese nakama
This week, I pulled a muscle, so I’ve been trying to take it easy. Monday I just did mitts with coach John, and taught kids – two classes- to cover for a fellow instructor. Tuesday, I did Vinny’s jiu-jitsu class and enjoyed learning lovely knee bars. 😀 I also met my nakama – “teammate” and student from Groundslam Gym in Japan, Rikiya! 😀
He enjoyed training, I think. I really REALLY enjoyed talking to him again, because he’s a great guy, of course, AND I got to speak Japanese. I love speaking Japanese so much….
We went to El Pollo Loco afterwards. 😀
Kickboxing sparring ended badly for me, but I kind of grew from it.
In the afternoon, I covered another kids class.
Today, Wednesday, I did mitts early with John and practice stuff that I’m simply bursting to do in sparring tomorrow. te ka gen nashi
I wanted to do BJJ technique but didn’t have time. Vinny was on my case a bit…DAMNIT I WANT to do BJJ SO BADLY. But I really have to prioritize MMA training. ;_; Well today was a different story. I rushed to be an interpreter for Emi Fujino and cornerpeople (Mei Yamaguchi and Taiyo Nakahara). Fujino-san was my old nakama from when I lived in Japan, and trained at Keishukai! Click here to read my article I wrote on her for MMAsucka.com
Man, I feel so bad for them. They were SO jetlagged, but we had to drag them all over, showing them this and that room, and then to do one last medical exam.
That took longer that I thought, and I had to miss teaching my kids class. :/ oh well!
Then, I did Yoga and the room was a freaking OVEN. We went to the MARS room, which is the super hot room. Everyone around me was moaning and groaning, and I finished my entire water bottle, which I usually don’t. Then I jumped in the pool at my apartment complex and swam some laps.
Back when I was in the yoga room, we were doing our last series of stretches, and the yoga instructor said something about how we should let go of our day, let go of our stresses, enjoy our lives, etc etc some spiritual thing. I thought of how nostalgic I felt with Rikiya, Fujino-san and my Japanese nakama. How come they ALL came within the span of a few days?
Suddenly I was overwhelmed with a powerful sense of sadness and loss.
(Brittany took this last year on the day I moved)
I try not to talk about it much, but there’s not a DAY, not a SINGLE DAY that goes by where I don’t miss Japan. I don’t regret leaving – I’m working towards a goal. I made a choice and it was a good choice. But damnit, I came back to American to FIGHT and where is my fight? No, no, don’t think like that. I came back to TRAIN, not to FIGHT. And train I am. I adore training here. I adore the city of Las Vegas, I adore my coaches, I adore my gym, I adore the people, I adore living with my mom again…… I look into the eyes of the children I teach and see purity and light.
but to walk the streets of Japan again. To visit izakaya restaurants with my training partners after training…. I miss Tsuru-chan, one of my best friends, who I haven’t been able to talk to ONCE since I moved!! We only text.
To chat in Japanese to people, to feel the energy of life flowing out of human beings, crowded together in a train, or in downtown Tokyo.
To make a difference in the lives of businessmen and their families who are moving overseas and need English to survive, or kids who just want to play, using English….
to shake hands with my friends because hugs are too much contact, too American. (laugh)
To visit the shrines and see people pray for blessings for their babies, their school exams, their jobs, their fights.
The loyalty and caring of the Japanese people.
If I moved back there, I don’t think I could live there. But I want to go. I need to go.
It hurts so much. Half of my heart still lives there. I feel a hole in my chest where it used to be. I only notice it when I’m alone, though. When I’m at Syndicate, I’m filled up again. I just look up at the signs and think what I sacrificed. I have a job to do, and I swear silently again and again to Japan, to my spirit that still lives and waits for me in Japan, that I’ll gaman, bear it, and do my job, so I can go back and visit again soon.
kakugo – determination.
I adore this version of this song soooo much, because it’s sung on 25 languages, and I really feel the humanity – all around the world, we all love, we all suffer, we all rejoice. We are all people. It’s beautiful. And languages are beautiful.