Kári Sigurðsson – Alive (Extended Version)
A few months ago, Sunday’s were for writing. Then, Parkinson’s stepped it’s game up. Apparently it didn’t like the kick in the nuts I gave it on November 7th.
Yes, I assign this disease a personality. I humanize it. It gives me a face to drive my elbow through (much more satisfying than a simple punch). I’ll digress here and go merrily off onto a violent tangent at my adversary’s expense (ahhh…dat ground and pound doh…good times). So after the Sacramento Open, I took a much needed breather…from everything.
SCENE: Josh sitting on the stool in his corner after round one. Cole Goddard, Jimmy Le, Daniel Logan Pearson, Mike Preston, Tony DeVaughn, shouting encouragement through the cage.
“You cut him!”
“He can’t stand with you!”
“Sweep the leg, Cobra Kai! “(yeah, I went there.)
Colby Robinson holds the ice bag on the back of RvP’s neck while managing his cuts.
Benjamin Riddle: Trying to hold his fighter’s attention-“Alright you hurt him bad there at the end, but his jab’s doing work. Keep that head moving, he’ll over-extend, shoot and put him on his back. Make him pay the iron price.”.
Josh hears but his eyes are fixed on the opposite corner. Not to see if he has really hurt the undefeated champ, everybody knows that Parkinson’s is connected. All of his fight’s are fixed, the only betting action is on how long the challenger can drag out the fight.
RvP : Staring across the bloody canvas to leave no doubt (telepathic voice-over)- “We’re going the distance punk, you don’t have my first KO in you. This is going to hurt you. After this fight, everyone’s going to know your game and give you five rounds of punishment.”
SCENE: RvP is standing early, eager for round two. The bell rings. RvP takes the center, eats a jab looking to invite the big right cross and set up a double-leg takedown into side-mount. He let’s his hands drop a bit, throws a body shot, inviting… PD jabs once, twice, connecting, then winds up the right…
RvP: Smiling, in thought-“There it is…” He ducks under the right cross and drives his shoulder into PD’s ribs, throwing his hands around in search of the far leg to complete the big takedown…
SCENE: The leg is planted firmly out of reach. He’s the one who’s been set up. PD is a veteran who fights nothing but steel-spined warriors. He pivots as RvP slips forward and takes his back, coming down on top of him. He drives  his left forearm under Josh’s jaw, crushing blood and airflow as he grabs his right bicep, locking in the choke and using the right hand to drive RvP’s head down harder into the blade of the forearm buried into his neck. Our “hero’s” vision is blurring around the edges. The world is going red, not black.
Parkinson’s: Whispering in Josh’s ear-“Sleeeeep. You were never special. I only take on the strong.” As he cranks harder on the choke, using his legs for leverage, he lifts RvP’s head, allowing the crowd to enter his fading, red-washed vision.
RvP: Thinking-“Why drag this out? It’s only going to get harder. Let’s take a break and ease out.”
SCENE: RvP won’t tap, but he starts to relax his neck and let the fight be over. Then he hears the crowd, all fighters who have gone the distance in their own bloody wars. They are a screaming mob of hazy revenants, ghostly to his pressure-damaged eyes, but one is clear. She is small, but her voice is crystal clear and familiar.
SmallGirlWithParkinson’s: “Get up. I did.”
RvP: “Thank you.”
SCENE: Despite the full Rear Naked Choke being completely locked in, it is too early in the fight and this “hero” is just too strong. Tucking his chin with all his might he easily separates the arms locked around his neck. As air roars in the world returns to focus. Robinson rolls…
Fade to black…until next episode.
The above overly-dramatized bit of fiction is just my metaphor for what really happened over the past few months. I was on top of the world even though my record didn’t stand for long (It never even got posted!). Then PD stepped it’s game up. Tremor pretty much non-stop, insomnia returned, and if you’ve seen me at work lately, you know my limp is as bad as it’s ever been. Usher in thoughts of early retirement, lost pension, depression’s triumphant return and my old pal loneliness and it’s no wonder I checked out. Forget 7,447 days, I didn’t want 7 more days like that! A clarification here: I’m not talking about suicide here, though I completely understand when people do think about it. I’m just saying I didn’t have the energy to fight. Honestly, I felt like a hypocrite. I’m still Stage 1 (I think) and I get knocked down? Some inspiration!
Then, scrolling through my facebook feed, I noticed a WordPress link from one of my Parkinson’s support groups. This was the first fellow blogger with PD that I had seen so of course I clicked the link and read the latest post…and then through the rest of the night read the whole entire blog. It’s called Small Girl With Parkinson’s by Meg Bernard.
She’s tiny, but she just may be the strongest woman in the world. Not only that, but she shares a distinct writing style similar to my own. If you do yourself a favor and click the link that will be permanently mounted at the top of my blog, I’m sure you’ll see it. It was the best use of a sleepless night I will ever spend because I realized, no one is alone in this. What she has survived is beyond incredible and you need to read her (very well written, I might add) story.
I’m sharing it today to remind us all that we’re all going to fall down, feel defeated and maybe even give up at times. Here’s the secret…THAT’S OK! Open yourself to your inspiration wherever it may come from. There are no rules in this fight. So you left the ring? Grab a metal chair on your way back in and come flying off the top rope with it! As for me, thanks to the SGwP, I’m going to get back after a certain crazy goal I’ve had since this thing started. Seriously, does anyone know of a woman (even a self-titled Warrior Princess) who can lift 700 lbs from 1300 miles away? I do. Thanks Meg. Sunday’s are for writing again.

635 for a 30lb PR while I was supposedly “down”. This is just 31lbs away from the national record. You’re not down until you stay down.