A Dose Of Reality To End Your Week…

Folks, one of the big things that tend to grind a traditional martial artist’s gears is how fight are portrayed on television and in movies. And don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of a good action flic and I’ve enjoyed the cheesiest of them (Van Damme’s drunken dance scene in “Kickboxer” comes to mind). But one needs to understand the realities of how fights actually go and how they can and can’t happen.

The first biggest problem is the David and Goliath concept. Most people love this kind of a scenario because it pits a small underdog against a much larger and formidable opponent. Nothing feels better than seeing the little guy who spent the whole first half of the movie getting bullied and pushed around, kick the ever-loving shit out of the goon who started it all. But let’s examine some basic physics for a moment, shall we?

There’s a lot to be said for skill and training. In fact, consistent and progressive self-defence training will assuredly ALWAYS improve one’s chances of defending oneself and getting out of a sticky situation. But the important takeaway is that actual fight situations are just that; a means to an end, that end being to get out and get away before you or someone else becomes seriously injured. The concept of two persons squaring off in some lame attempt at righteous indignation, defending someone’s honour or finding vengeance for someone else doesn’t happen. This is only movie magic.

The next problem is when we see a smaller opponent dominating a larger one. Although I mentioned that there’s a lot to be said for training, one needs to understand that a 95-pound person likely won’t fare well against a 200-pound opponent once they get their hands on them, training or not. It’s simple physics and the reason why most combat sports Ike boxing, wrestling and MMA have weight classes. Even though I believe the smaller fighter would likely get some good shots in, the heavier opponent just has to bare down on them with their total weight and it’s lights out. For the most part.

Another issue on the docket is how we always see dragged out fights that last up to half an hour, all while both sides are delivering strikes to sensitive areas that would likely seriously injure or kill a real person. My favourite is a snap kick to the face where you see the mouth flop over in slow motion while saliva or blood flies out. Classic. But I digress… Even if a person managed to stay conscious through some of those severe strikes to the head or managed to remain standing after those devastating blows to the body, they wouldn’t be able to brush off the second or third, meaning the fight would depend on who’s lucky enough to land those critical strikes in the first minutes. This is certainly where training has its benefits.

I’m actually a perfect example of that last paragraph, having taken a single strike to the rib cage that basically had me off my feet for well over a month. It wasn’t even my opponent’s full strength, but it’s placement and technique were enough to cause damage. Interestingly enough, my opponent was larger than me and as I’ve often brought up before, mass times acceleration is what creates Force, so the greater the mass, combined with reasonable acceleration is all that’s needed. A smaller opponent would have less mass, leading to less Force. There. Now, you can pass high school physics. you’re welcome.

Again, I absolutely love a good underdog movie… After all, that’s the whole point of television; to escape reality and garner some enjoyment at the same time. If things get too real on a show I’m watching, I get bored. I can find reality anywhere. Except in the minds of. Non-martial artists who think that fights actually happen the way they’re portrayed, apparently. And THAT’s the problem. ☯️

Back In The Saddle…

I walk out of the office, exhausted and committed to getting home, pouring drink and binge-watching Sons of Anarchy while my son plays at my feet and I write some posts based on whatever thoughts drift through my head. I get home and my children are blessedly quiet and occupied as I greet my wife. She has supper started and I discover my oldest has a batch of homework that needs doing, especially since he was home sick on Friday. No worries, I think… I can hammer this out with him before I eat then have the evening to relax. “The hell, you will…” says my wife. “You’re going back to karate tonight.” Guess my plans have changed…

I pack my gym bag after having it empty for over eight weeks. I had washed my gi a few weeks prior. I feel a near-paralyzing sense of anxiety at the thought of putting myself in a room with punches and kicks coming at me. I reached above my head and stretched the left side of my rib cage, aware of the tightness and aching that remains. My wife comes and checks on me, aware that I’m trying to cram as many of my chores in as I can before leaving. I manage to get my son’s homework done well in advance. I no longer have ANY excuse… It’s time to go back.

I leave my house thirty minutes before our 8 pm class is slated to start. The stairs to the third floor feel higher than usual and I wonder at the reception my absence will have elicited. I walk in to see one of the youth classes nearing its end. Sensei Mike is leading it, and we make eye contact for a brief moment before he continues on. I walk into the locker room and change into my gi, my arms feeling leaden as I dwell on the first class I’ll attend since early April. I walk out onto the main dojo floor in time to see the youth class finish up and bow out.

Sensei Mike greets me warmly and asks where I’ve been for the past while. That first minute tells me that he doesn’t know about the injury I sustained during our workshop. I explain my absence and the injury and I see Mike’s face change behind the masks we’re still required to wear. On the one side, I’m glad he didn’t know about the injury as he likely would have dwelled on it during my absence. We discussed the various lessons that he and I should be associating to what happened and how we could share it with the student body.

Monday night was my first class back. I practiced, I trained and I broke a sweat. It was a good burn and a good feeling. Tonight will be my second class back. And that’s the way of it; like walking a long journey requires one step at a time, my return to peak condition will be the same. One class at a time. Yesterday was my cardio day. My legs are killing me, today. Small price to pay. Combining karate training with cardio will lead to weight loss, increased speed and reflexes and hopefully regaining a little something of what I’ve lost in recent years. Let’s go take that next step… ☯️

I Dream Of Okinawa…

I’ve written about some of my time in Okinawa, a journey that took place exactly one month after 9/11 happened and the world changed forever. 9/11 just happens to be my birthday, which made it all the worse. I don’t pretend to compare my personal pain with any that the people directly involved with those tragic events have to have felt but I know that it affected me in ways I still haven’t recovered from, as well. And although I realize that I’ve often written about the martial arts aspect of my time overseas, I’ve never really spoken about some of my personal experiences in Okinawa. And that would be a fuckin’ shame…

I could get into the entire journey TO Okinawa, which included a couple of cities in the US as well as some within Canada… I still have camcorder film of the entire journey (yes, I still have a camcorder) but I’d rather share some of the feelings I experienced while over there. Okinawa was among the best experiences of my life. Besides the fact that it’s the birthplace of karate, my journey and time there changed me in ways that never would have happened if I hadn’t gone over there…

Once we were in Naha, Okinawa we checked into our hotel. I wish I could remember the name of the place but all I remember is the Japanese pronunciation of my room number, which was “San-Yaku-nana” (room 307). Picture what would be a cold October morning in Canada… chances are that you’ll wake up shivering if your furnace isn’t going yet. in Naha, we were woken by temperatures in the mid to high 30’s… We usually shared a breakfast of eggs and toast together in one room before deciding how our day would go.

Outside of our obligations to the Uechi family, we spent a good amount of our down time on the beach. Although it was 40 degrees Celsius during the afternoon and extreme summer weather for us, it was actually late autumn for the Okinawans. They were all in long pants and jackets while we were in shorts and splashing in the ocean. It was a strange contrast, especially since the Okinawans were curious and watchful of the strange white people who were cray enough to swim in the ocean during the “cold” months.

During the evenings, we would enjoy Japanese beer and Sake while reminiscing of our time in training… Memories that no camcorder could capture. During the day, we visited Zen Buddhist monasteries at my request as well as shopping locals that featured much of the culture that makes Okinawa uniquely beautiful. I got to experience chocolate-covered grasshoppers and prayed in a few different monasteries. It was great. Nothing quite like getting a front row seat to the culture one was raised on, to change one’s perspective.

The sense of peace and belonging I felt in Okinawa hasn’t been replicated since. The people, the culture and the beauty hasn’t struck me in the same way ever since. The thought that Sensei has been back about three times since then breaks my heart, because I was never able to join him. But one must never live life with regrets, right? I only bring it up now because I’ve recently been dreaming of it… Okinawa has penetrated my very soul. Maybe I’ll get back there someday. in the meantime, karate may be the only piece of it I have left to hold onto. ☯️

The Funny Thing About Fear, Is Everyone Is Afraid Of It…

Fear is a natural thing. People don’t usually think it is but it is. Fear is a natural reaction to something that could bring harm or is considered dangerous against oneself or others. Most people spend the majority of their lives trying to avoid fear, as though it expresses some level of weakness to be afraid. It starts quite early in life, with parents trying to convince children not to be afraid of the dark, what may be under the bed or in the closet. As adults, we acknowledge that these fears are pointless because we’ve grown and come to learn that there’s nothing to fear. Children haven’t had this benefit at so early an age.

None of this stops us from trying to rationalize and dismiss one’s fears, children or otherwise. And while it may seem normal to get frustrated with a child who may be afraid of the dark, what happens when some fears penetrate into adulthood? Worse yet, what happens when an adult develops a new fear based on experience? Should it still be rationalized and dismissed? What if it disrupts or damages something within your adult life? Sometimes it can be easier to ignore a problem than to deal with it. But as adults, we need to use that logic to figure out an intelligent solution to our fears, as opposed to ignoring them.

As some of you may have recently read, I suffered an injury back in early April. This injury included damage to my rib cage as well as the muscle wall covering said ribs. It happened in karate class while training through a weekend seminar and as much as I’d like to say that I should recognize that it isn’t a fuckin’ knitting circle, it’s a combat art, I have to admit that getting hurt IN karate is something that I’ve not only never experienced before, it’s caused me some apprehension in going back.

I really didn’t think it would, at first. I spent weeks on muscle relaxants and pain killers, trying to heal and get over the injury. I lost several nights’ sleep and spent most of those nights curled up in a cold sweat, crying out the pain. Despite having trained for several decades, I have NEVER been injured to this extent while training in karate. Oh, I’ve been injured and required recovery but never anything like this. And never as a result of a karate class.

As the weeks have trickled past, I’ve recovered slowly, able to move easier, breathe easier and finally able to get some sleep without crying. I made a point of acting tough at work but it had a profound effect. I kept telling myself that I would soon be ready to return. But recently, I came to realize that despite being completely healed, I felt an intense level of anxiety and stress at the thought of returning to class. It’s been debilitating and has had me finding every excuse in the book NOT to go to class. I have no fear of facing the other black belts; we understand the risks and potential injuries that come with training. This is all me. This is all in my head.

Considering I was badly injured and needed almost two months to recover, my fear is not irrational. I know that. But my anxiety over reintroducing myself into the dojo is. And eventually, I’ll run out of excuses. When that time comes, I’ll need to decide whether I hang up my belt and move on to a different chapter of life or if I stick to my plan of continuing my martial arts journey and continue to learn. As a family man, I have an obligation, now more than ever, to maintain the ability to defend myself and my family. I also need to continue working towards maintaining my health, especially if I expect to live long enough to see my grandchildren. Food for self-thought… ☯️

A Little Change Can Go A Bad Way…

Every one of us at some point in our lives, have seen something that has made us jump up and say, “Wow, I should really try that…” Although that can be fine in small doses, major changes in lifestyle, nutrition or exercise regimens can have severe side effects that one should rather go without. This can apply to almost anything and is why it’s so important to consult your family doctor or medical practitioner prior to making any of those changes.

I know some folks who woke up one morning and decided they were going to go “carb free.” Hey, that’s great and I get it. Maybe you want to lose a bit of weight. Maybe you want to get healthier and slim down so you don’t feel bloated all the time. But here’s a little secret that most people don’t seem to acknowledge: you need carbohydrates. Carbs are the body’s fuel and cutting them out entirely usually isn’t healthy. Although you don’t need (nor should you) gorge yourself on carb-heavy meals several times a day, it also should be cut out completely.

Maybe you just think a new exercise routine looks wicked cool and you think it could be loads of fun. And it may be. You just need to be educated about the risks before doing so. One good example I can think of, is a couple of summers ago when I decided to break my 60-kilometre record on the bicycle for the first time. I took all my usual precautions and I had cycled for 40 and even 50 kilometres in one sitting before, so I didn’t anticipate any serious issues (blood sugars notwithstanding).

But by the time I had managed about three quarters of the total trip and was on the final stretch to home, I was struck with a sudden wave of nausea. I was starting to feel cold, despite the summer heat and I was sweating profusely. I had several litres of water on my bike and had taken a number of breaks in the shade so I had no concerns that it was heat stroke or dehydration. But by the time I got home, my entire body was racked with pain.

Turns out that even though I made efforts to stay hydrated, the heat combined with the increased water intake flushed out most of my body’s mineral salts through my sweat, causing a condition called hyponatremia. By the time I got home, I had to keep sipping Gatorade to bring up my electrolyte and mineral salts as I ate salted foods to bring my sodium levels back up. Once I felt better, I passed out and slept for a while. It was a learning experience and now I’ve adapted for it.

The key message is to educate yourself ahead of time on what you’re attempting and make sure you understand the risks as well as what changes you may have to adopt in order to make it work for you and to be safe. This can best be accomplished by speaking with a professional; a nutritionist or dietitian if you’re planning on making any significant changes in your overall diet, a fitness professional or trainer if you’re thinking about starting a new fitness routine or your doctor for just about anything else. Food for thought… ☯️

One Can’t Help But Wonder…

The past ten years have seen an incredible amount of advancement in my Diabetes and self-care. It wasn’t until 2015 that I discovered carb-counting… It seems pretty ridiculous when I say it, now. I’m not sure how I survived without proper food calculations and knowing how much insulin to take in relation to the food I ate. There’s also been significant education on what constitutes something that will affect my blood sugars or not. Realistically, everything affects blood sugars but I mostly mean in relation to food.

The introduction of the insulin pump and continuous glucose monitoring has been life-changing for me and has seen me through some of the most controlled blood sugar levels and the best A1C results in my life. Although we did the best we could with what we knew throughout my youth, a lot of what I’m doing now would have been available or could have been taught to me. In light of the many years of complications, comas and issues that resulted from my Diabetes, it’s been raising an important question in my mind in recent years: I wonder if it could have different?

I have to admit that it’ll come off sounding a bit like bragging… And that’s mostly because it is. But I pretty much brought myself back from the brink during my childhood. Insulin resistance and complications made it so that I was given a pretty short life expectancy that wouldn’t have seen me past my teens. When I joined karate, I pretty much put myself through hell in order to grow, heal and get better. Insulin resistance eliminated, I was able to push forward and start accomplishing some actual goals in life instead of assuming that I’d likely die before I reached adulthood.

The bragging part comes from the fact that I managed to keep training, developing and pushing myself despite these obstacles until I reached black belt and became an instructor. I also had dreams of becoming a police officer so that I could help others. I had to get myself through basic training and develop myself further in order to accomplish that goal and actual earn my badge. And once I had that badge, it took me very little time to grow and become the one who taught others to earn their badge.

At the height of my martial arts peak, I considered myself to be good. Extremely good. I won’t be vain enough to say I was the best because Sensei could still beat the living shit out of me and even if he hadn’t been in the picture, there’ll always bee someone more skilled. To think otherwise would be ignorant. But I was fast, strong and beyond capable. So what would have happened if all this knowledge, education and resources had been available to me when I had been going through all of that? Would my skills be even further than they are now? Would I have been faster and stronger still?

I can’t help but feel tat I’ve lost an opportunity by only learning everything I have about my own self-care in the past few years as opposed to the past few decades. It boggles the mind to think that all of those avoided complications and better health would have not only forwarded my life in martial arts and fitness respects, but perhaps I would have increased my longevity by a significant amount, as well. Who knows? I certainly don’t because that ship has sailed. Perhaps it’s time to revisit that hell I put myself through, all those years ago, and start working towards getting back some of what I’ve lost in recent years. Some food for self-thought… ☯️

If it Isn’t Hard, Is It Even Worth Doing?

I read an interesting quote by Ashton Kutcher, of all people, that says, “If it doesn’t seem insurmountable, how is it going to be a life purpose?” An interesting quote and deep meaning behind it, confirming my opinion that knowledge and wisdom can come from any source. Of course, as some of my readers would and have pointed out, a quote is only as good as the confirmation of its source. Realistically, unless one is in a position to actually speak to the source to confirm the quote’s accuracy, it’s up in the air. However, that makes the words no less true. But I digress…

The point and purpose is to speak about those “insurmountable” goals and life purposes and how you can get past the BELIEF that they’re insurmountable. When I look back at my life, I recognize that some of the goals and purposes I planned for myself seemed impossible at the time. Considering I’ve achieved almost everything I set out to do in life, it almost seems laughable that I was as concerned as I was that I would REACH those goals. But Everest always looks insurmountable until you’re touching the flags at the top, right?

When I was younger and I stepped into a dojo for the first time, my health was waning, I had no support from the outside on my choice to start training and I believed my life would end before I reached my late teens. That first class was among one of the hardest things I’ve ever done, considering my blood sugars dropped, I had no physical constitution and the workout was gruelling for those who had been there for a while so you can probably imagine how difficult it was for me. But like taking that first step up the mountain, completing that first class paved the way for me to push froward and reach my goals. The same can be said of most things in life.

It’s important that goals and purposes be difficult. Nothing worth having comes without some kind of fight. If you can simply coast through to the finish line, it technically isn’t a race, right? But while contemplating that thought, it’s important to bear in mind that difficulty is a subjective thing. Maybe walking ten minutes to the corner store is a fuckin’ joke to me and I don’t consider it exercise, despite walking for twenty minutes, round trip. But someone else may have difficulties in mobility, health issues and other problems that make walking for twenty minutes a significant challenge. This means that it’s important never to judge someone else on their chosen goals, even if they may seem like less to you.

Another important quote that I like, in case y’all haven’t noticed that I love quotes, is attributed to Muhammed Ali who said, “Often it isn’t the mountains ahead that wear you out, it’s the little pebble in your shoe.” Getting started and building one’s momentum is what will usually get you there and accomplishing your goals. Just remember that when it gets hard, and it will, that’s normal. If it isn’t hard, it isn’t worth doing. The easy path isn’t challenging. Food for thought… ☯️

Can’t Walk A Mile In Someone’s Shoes When It’s Painful…

Well over a month ago, I suffered a pretty painful injury during a karate seminar as a result of trying to spar like I was still in my twenties. I was doing pretty good, for a few minutes. In my head, I was moving with the same speed and grace as I did when I was first graded as a black belt. In reality, I was moving with the level of grace that a thick sap slowly moves its way down the trunk of a tree. And I paid the price in pain…

My opponent caught me with a straight punch to the upper ribs, with his dominant hand, no less. There are three important lessons to be learned from that experience; one for me, one for him and one for both of us. The lesson for me is that I shouldn’t have walked into an oncoming punch. Although I was throwing an attack of my own at the time, focus should be on preserving and protecting oneself first. You can’t protect yourself or others if you get taken out.

The lesson for my opponent is that at his level of skill, he should have been able to control his strike and even halt it short of impacting. One of the differences that I’ve noticed with Shotokan as opposed to Uechi Ryu, is that the practitioners are all in, on every strike, even in practice. Although this can be useful in developing strength to your strikes, it can be detrimental to one’s overall control. But I digress…

The lesson for the two of us, is that even a strike that isn’t at full power can still be devastating when properly applied. After all, if a strike from 1 to 10, where 1 is a light touch and 10 is the intention to kill, I seriously doubt that my opponent, who just happens to be a practitioner in the same dojo as I am, had ANY intentions of killing me. But the results of that strike have been enough to keep me on my ass for the past month, proving that an effective strike doesn’t have to be “all in” to be effective.

The past month has been increasingly difficult, especially in the first couple of weeks. I’ve had a hard time moving and every little thing, including but not limited to sneezing, coughing, burping and farting has sent me into spasms of pain where I’d be seeing stars for several minutes before it would finally subside. Don’t even get me started on the challenges of showering or using the washroom. A month has passed but the pain has not, although it is getting better. Damaged muscles can take weeks and even months to heal. But I’ve learned to appreciate some important aspects along the way…

My father has been wheelchair-bound for almost 20 years, now. Cursed with a degenerative spine, he’s been living with constant, 10 out of 10 pain for years. Nothing has ever worked for him or is expected to. It’s pain he simply has to live with. And although my pain is nowhere near at the level his is, I can appreciate certain aspects that constant pain causes. Here are a few things that you should never say to someone who is in pain:

1. “The pain can’t be that bad.” I’ve spent years hearing people talk to my mother and make that very comment about my father. For one thing, what’s only a 5 out of 10 pain to one person may be much, much worse for someone else. No one has the right to gauge your pain for you.
2. “Why are you so tired?” Constant pain is exhausting. People don’t tend to think so because when a person is in pain, their last thought is of getting sleep. The problem comes from managing that pain over a long period of time. It takes its toll on the body and can be devastatingly exhausting. Most chronic conditions will be like this. I have a dear friend who has fibromyalgia (hopefully I spelled that right) and although she wears a brave face, the constant pain makes getting through the day with a smile quite challenging.
3. “You’d feel better if you got up and did something.” No, no, I would not. I’ll be the first to admit that one shouldn’t just flop down and refuse to move until ALL pain has subsided. Besides the fact that sitting idle can be a problem for someone with type-1 Diabetes due to poor circulatory and nerve-related issues, there’s the danger of stiffening up from doing nothing, which can extend the amount of time required to heal. Don’t even get me started on loss of muscle mass and atrophy. But sometimes you gotta baby that injury and allow your tissues to heal. This can mean putting your feet up and letting the finely-tuned machine that is your body do its job and fix the injury before you push yourself.

Everyone’s pain is different. I can honestly say that although I’m not on the same pain level as my father, I can certainly sympathize with some of the issues he faces with his back being out of commission. Makes me appreciate all the more, how some people, even medical professionals, try to push him in ways his body is incapable of responding. Don’t ever judge someone else’s pain. You can never tell how an individual may be feeling or dealing with a particular pain. And no one has a right to gauge your pain but you. Food for thought…☯️

Get A KICK Out Of This Story…

Sometimes I look back on my younger years and I become nostalgic for the past. During my youth, I never travelled much or wandered far from the comforting confines of Northern New Brunswick but it continues to surprise me how full a life one can have, even living in such a small environment. And no environment could have given me as much as my home. Here’s one of the memories drifting to the surface of my psych. Buckle up…

This story takes me all the way back to 1989. I was 11-years old and my older brother had another two years of life ahead of him. My health was waning and life wasn’t going so well for me. Increased insulin-resistance and the development of ulcers in my stomach saw me hospitalized almost as much as my brother. in fact, we often shared a hospital room together. I’ll let you decide whether that’s cool or just a little bit sad. But I digress…

I was in 7th grade and we had oral presentation to give in class on a topic of our choosing. As was usually my choice, I spoke about Type-1 Diabetes, its causes and how it’s treated. Because of the number of students, we had two separate 7th grade classes; 7A and 7B. I was in 7A. Didn’t mean I was smarter or further ahead. I think it went by alphabetical order. Anyway, on the third day of presentations when we were all done, the teacher announced that someone from 7B would be sharing his presentation with us.

In walked my friend Guillaume. My Sensei’s son. Friend and adoptive brother. He was asked by the teacher to share the same presentation as he had to his class in exchange for bonus points. Considering she found the presentation worthy enough to share with another class, I had difficulty grasping WHY he would need bonus points, but whatever kept me from doing actual work was fine by me, back then.

Guillaume went on to give a presentation about Uechi Ryu karate, how long he had been practicing it and the benefits it provided him in life, thus far. He capped off his presentation with a demonstration of a form, or kata, which I now know as well. While the rest of the class was busy snickering at the movement and making fun of him, I was captivated by what I was seeing. The flow, the movement, the gracefulness… My eyes were open to the potential of what I was seeing.

It was at this point that I had called Guillaume at home and asked about class times and location. I joined the same month. I had tried other styles and attempted different things, but none struck quite as deep in my soul as Uechi Ryu did. I would go on to study Uechi for the next 33 years. It would ultimately save my life and help forge me into the person I am today. All of that from a simple ten-minute presentation in class. Nice.

Our instincts provide for more than we usually assume. And as the old saying goes, we often find our destiny on the road we least thought to travel. All things happen for a reason. If the teacher hadn’t asked Guillaume to share his presentation with out class, I might have never been exposed to Uechi Ryu. I likely never would have joined. And my health may have continued to deteriorate to an uncorrectable level. Who knows? I certainly don’t. I just know to appreciate life as it’s been offered and continue to live life with no regrets. ☯️

Some Further Ribbing…

Last Friday morning, I had a doctor’s appointment to try and figure out if the constant, piercing pain in my side is actually the result of a broken rib or simply something muscular. After all, getting punched straight into the ribcage would no doubt crush/bruise some muscle tissue, as well. It’s been a pretty disappointing week. The pain has kept me from sleeping or sitting comfortably. The only positive aspect is I’ve been shoving fluids down my throat, non-stop for the past couple of weeks to keep from coughing. On Saturday evening while watching television, I sneezed unexpectedly and almost passed out from the pain.

My visit to the doctor’s visit was inconclusive so he had me scheduled for x-rays to try and examine the injury. Since it was Good Friday, the x-ray clinic wasn’t open until the following day, so an appointment was made. On Saturday morning I returned to the clinic and they took several shots of my torso, facing different directions. The technician was able to say that she couldn’t see any obvious break but that the doctor would examine the x-rays and get back to me. Since it was the weekend, she advised it likely wouldn’t be until Tuesday before I heard anything. Guess what day it is?

Obviously, I didn’t hear anything back yesterday and it’s still the wee hours of the morning. But if it IS muscular, there’s nothing to be done but rest, take it easy and let it heal. Ironically, even if my rib is fractured, there’s nothing to be done other than let it heal, as well. The only thing worse than being hurt is having nothing that can be done about it. the only silver lining is I was provided with anti-inflammatory pills and muscle relaxants. The latter has allowed me to at least get some sleep at night, but my mobility and ability to do anything but the mildest things around the house and at work are still hindered.

My inspiration to write has also been somewhat hindered. It’s hard to focus when your entire torso is piercing with pain. Hopefully, this passes soon. Besides the fact that I’m missing a HUGE amount of karate, right when I was finding my groove and really getting back into it, I’m not doing much physically, which is playing havoc with my blood sugars, my weight, everything… As I always say, life doesn’t care about one’s plan. I’ll blow the dust off once I’m cleared to resume. Hopefully, that happens before the roads are clear and dry so I can start out on the bicycle. ☯️