Pain is Proof

As I slowly traveled through the end of the dark tunnel of deep sleep towards the light of a new day and the annoying tune of my alarm clock screamed at me to “get up!” I began to feel the reminders of last nights class as I smacked the snooze button. The pain started taking over my whole body. It was like it was asleep too and as I started stirring to consciousness it swept along each inch of body in what felt like a war against me. Almost like the pain was waiting for me to wake up, like it was a just a waste of the pain’s efforts if it went on while I was sleeping.

“No,” those little pain assholes said, “Let’s wait until she’s awake and then we’ll really fuck with her!” *insert evil, maniacal laughter here. You know, that hearty “Mwa-ha-ha-ha.”

I guess at least the pain was kind enough to let me sleep.

I slowly used my arm to prop myself up to sitting and eventually it dawned on me that that wasn’t the bed frame creaking and popping… it was me.


My neck.

My jaw.

My ears.

My thumb.

My legs.

My back.

My arms.

My core.

My big toe.

Ouch. Ouch. Ouch. Ouch. Ouch. Ouch. Fuck. Ouch. Ouch. (Just seeing if you were actually reading all of those. Mwa-ha-ha-ha)

I may sound a tad bitchy about it, but bear with me here.

Sure my body hurts and is sore but I’ve always been one of those weird people that kind of enjoys it. There are definite positives in that pain. And, what wasn’t positive is a lesson. Pain is pretty good at teaching you what not to do next time.

The neck stiffness is a reminder of how far I’ve come. We drilled arm triangles and my husband was focusing on getting the details down. He was having a little trouble getting his shoulder in the right position and he cranked the shit out of my neck and jaw several times.


I did my best to power through it so he could drill and get the kinks worked out. I really want to be a good partner and for him to be able to work on what he needs. I remember my first few classes and how much I struggled with how painful and uncomfortable BJJ can sometimes be. The things I would tap to or complain about in those first days would probably feel like a nice hug today.

My jaw and my ear pain is a reminder that I am getting stronger and the fighter I am looking for inside myself is definitely there. While rolling I got stuck in an arm triangle but managed to create a tiny bit of space. I could see the outside edges of my vision getting hazy but I wanted to see how long I could hold on. Surprisingly the haziness didn’t go any further so I didn’t tap and toughed it out instead.

My thumb, legs, back, core, and arm pain is proof that, well…


I’m still a spazzy white belt.

I don’t know what is positive about that other that a spazzy white belt is at least a white belt that is showing up and putting in the work. One of these days I’ll surely drop the spazzy and become more controlled and calm. We can all hope anyway.

I’m enjoying a nice rest today and have hot soak in a jetted tub planned for tonight. Tomorrow it’s time for some open mat and I’m sure I will encounter many more reminders, some a little painful, of how much I love BJJ and the positive impact it is having on my life.

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