So my MMA journey has been more than a journey about MMA.
My life as I knew it ended quite definitively a few months ago and here I am, on the path of rediscovery. So far, I can say that it has without a doubt been the most difficult one I’ve walked yet.
Today, I would like to say, to friends, to family, to strangers:
I’d like to think I’m good at being strong and I don’t exactly like receiving attention (Why am I blogging again?) but that makes me good at pretending to be OK and sometimes I’m not. When life falls apart it’s an opportunity to rebuild and that, truthfully, is fairly exciting. It still hurts, though.
When I’m not OK, please don’t worry about me; don’t look at me with pity. Do nothing but acknowledge and carry on with me as usual; neither seek me out nor ignore me. I want neither more attention nor less. I still want to smile and enjoy everything that’s good but I also want to be able to cry and not ignore everything that’s bad and I can do that only with people who are comfortable with me not being alright all the time.
To those in my life with whom I’ve been out of touch: chances are the things I’m going through are not about you and you can’t do anything with or about it anyway. If you are concerned you’ll acknowledge that and give me space and freedom to make the decisions I need to make without having to worry about you worrying about me. I need to trust that you know I still love and care for you even though I don’t have much time or emotional space for you right now.
To those in my life who are trying to understand my situation and draw conclusions: don’t. Let it be.
Don’t ask me to tell you the story of what happened like it’s an interesting piece of news and don’t make me justify what is happening in my life to you. Don’t ask me why or why not. Don’t tell me it’s awkward.
To my new family at the gym: you guys have been amazing and have kept me sane in ways you’ll never know. I will always have gratitude in my heart for you.
To the good Christians who I thought were, dare I not say family but let’s settle on friends when I first moved to Manila: please remove yourself from my life so that we can stop pretending you have any concern for me or mine.
How odd that sometimes the angels among us are not the pastors or the missionaries who say they are here to preach God’s love.
Instead, I’ve found angelic folk in unexpected places.
Take those sweaty people at the gym, for example. The ones who teach you how to fight your way up from the bottom, how to cope when you’re being crushed, how to get hurt and never give up, how to show respect and compassion, how to come out on top, win or lose, broken and bruised, laughing and smiling and giving glory to God.