Winning & Losing

It’s interesting, winning and losing – I’ve done my share of both.
Still a young fighter at 13 fights, but I’ve fought enough to know what each feels like.
Of course, losing stings. It hurts to have put everything you had into something and it not to be enough for others to see it (or score it), but it only stings. It hurts when you yourself feel like you didn’t do enough or perform well enough. It hurts when you feel like you let your coaches down, your family down, your teammates down. It hurts when you break your own heart.

But.
When you put 100% of everything you had into it. Put your heart into it. When you push past breaking points, pick yourself up when you felt like everything was crushing you. When you take hits, literally and figurately, and stand strong. You let go of ego and accept help. When you learn to trust yourself. When you fight a damn good fight. (sorry mom)

Fuck the rest.
It sucks, truly it does, to not be recognized, to not get a nice shiny belt, and to not feel your arm raised in victory, but it’s a fleeting moment, a feeling that will fade with time. But what won’t fade is how I felt in that ring. I can live without a win on paper.
I know what I felt in that ring, how I felt letting go.

Every time I get in the ring, I prove to myself that I’m a fighter.
This time around. I believed it.

Wins and loses are just numbers on paper, just words.
Watch me in that ring & I’ll show you what a fighter looks like.
I know without a doubt I am exactly where I need to be, exactly who I need to be.

Every fight brings a new set of circumstances, a new challenge. Every fight washes everything before it away. The past, the future, doesn’t matter – only the fight now.
I’ve already watched my fight a dozen times and I see the flaws, the things I need to work on, the laundry list of mistakes and adjustments that need to be made. But that doesn’t take away from the feeling I had when I finished that fight. That I had tried, I had tried so hard. In that moment, in this fight, I had given it everything. In those 15 minutes, I gave it my all – pushed through every emotion from frustration to confidence, anxiety to calmness, and kept going. From fight camp to ring, I have never felt better. Judges score cards mean nothing to me in the end. My coaches, my trainers, family, and teammates matter to me.
I matter to me.

So, please don’t look at me sadly or shy away from talking about the fight.
I’m not afraid of losing.
I fear not giving it my all. I fear disappointing myself.

And after this fight, I am proud. I am damn proud.

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