Lipstick on my Gloves: My journey to the ring
Monday, July 1 2013
A few years ago I noticed a high school friend posting pictures of himself boxing on Facebook. I learned that he was training to compete in an amateur boxing match through Haymakers for Hope (http://haymakersforhope.org/), an organization whose mission is "to knockout cancer the only way we know how,by literally fighting for a cure." I was intrigued.After I had my 4th child I was itching to do something interesting and Haymakers came to mind again. I noticed that they were just about to have sign-ups for their next Boston fight so I threw my name in the hat. I met with a local boxing trainer who talked me out of it because of the dangers, so I withdrew my application. It was Christmas time and I had put on a few lbs and didn't feel great so it seemed to be the right decision...plus I have 4 kids. I have too many responsibilities to fit it in the type of training necessary to compete. I trained hard, lost 11 lbs and was in the best shape of my life when fight night came. I regretted withdrawing my name.
The next day I received an email from Haymakers for Hope announcing their first all women's event happening in Boston on October 17th. I knew that this was my time and I wasn't going to let anything stop me. I will turn 39 before fight night and the last year of my 30's is dedicated to giving back and living more. This event epitomizes both for me. It also gives me a powerful outlet to set an example for my children...that I am more than just their Mom. I chose to stay home and leave a career behind, so they don't often see me challenging myself, setting goals, or doing things I enjoy. I want them all, especially my girls, to know that they should be strong, brave and disciplined. They should pursue things that interest and scare them. I want them to see me doing something that I love so they remember that, and not just me as their taxi driver. I also want Dave to see me in an unusual light...doing something that makes him proud of me...something that makes me proud of myself. The day to day dishes and laundry just don't cut it. It's really funny because when people hear what I'm doing they're shocked and wonder why I would want to box. I can't explain it. To me, it sounds like a perfectly normal idea. Why wouldn't you? I love the challenge and intensity of it. I look at all you people who run marathons and think there is something really wrong with you. To each her own crazy. :) For the next 4 months I am going to soak up the pain and glory of this once in a lifetime experience. I allow myself to be selfish, to put training ahead of other commitments, to do something extraordinary, something that challenges and inspires me. Something that helps others. I have a friend who also has 4 kids who was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer, who was not given much hope, who has now beat the disease. Dave lost his Grandmother to breast and other cancers. I have a friend who lost his young wife to breast cancer. He is now raising their daughter alone. My oldest and dearest friend is a cancer survivor. Some local friends have fought, and are currently fighting breast cancer. Not one of us is safe. Our lives can be changed in an instant with a cancer diagnosis. Getting punched in the face is so much easier than the fight they fight, and if our fundraising can help researchers find a cure...bring it on!