THE MAN IN THE ARENA...
Tuesday, November 20 2018
Tonight, I win…
Though I’m not referring to the boxing match. I’m not referring to the fundraising (though coming in at over $32,000 feels amazing!).
I win because I finally got in the ring. I only just realized last night what this whole thing has been about. How this event is so completely and directly tied into the journey I’ve been on the past 2 years, starting with quitting my job and taking that first trip to Peru… into the jungle… into myself.
I can’t believe I missed it. I’ve been so wrapped up in the training. In trying to balance boxing, with work, and life, that I haven’t really stepped outside of everything and looked at the bigger picture in a while. As I was getting ‘in the zone’ last night, visualizing the fight, thinking about my training, trying to calm my heart- which starts racing every time I think about getting in that ring- everything became so clear. Though I’m not going to write about it until after the event and I’ve really had some time to reflect on the whole experience… But I think you’ll all agree with the conclusions I came to! (Sorry for the cliffhanger, hope it’ll be worth the wait)
Here’s what I do know. The outcome tonight, is just that. An outcome tonight. If my arm is raised at the end of the fight, that doesn’t mean I’ve won and the game is over. It means that I’m on the right path and the work I’ve put in is proving just that- but the game continues, onto the next level, the next challenge. If my arm isn’t raised, that doesn’t mean I’ve lost, it means I’ve been shown an opportunity to improve, to grow, and that would be just as amazing of a gift, just as important of an outcome.
Are you ready?
Everyone is asking me this question. Jokingly, I usually reply, ‘Ready for this to be over…’ or ‘Ready to get my life back…’. Reality is I have no idea. Could I have trained harder? Absolutely. Could I have been lazier and taken it less seriously? Absolutely. Do I feel like a boxer? Some days moreso than others. Here’s what I do know- I’m in great shape, both physically and mentally. Physically better than I’ve been since my early 20s (and maybe even better), Mentally my brain feels sharp, like I’m back in Nepal filled with the energy of the universe.
In fact, my brain is almost too functional at times! One of my life coaches warned me of this- that removing alcohol and all other substances from my life, eating an incredibly healthy diet, exercising constantly, drinking lots of water, getting great sleep (not just in # of hours but a completely restorative, deep sleep). All this has led to a heightened awareness which at times has been overwhelming! Many thoughts, lots of input, almost like sitting on a perch above looking at life happening below- when generally I’m just part of that rat race just going about my business… More on this later on too.
But I digress- I AM ready.
My 2nd trip to the jungles of Peru communicated and confirmed exactly this. Trust. Trust that I have everything I need already inside of me… always. I don’t have to spend time or energy looking for it or trying to understand it- I just have to know, truly know and believe, that when the time comes, that strength will be there, the confidence will be there, the knowledge will be there, and I’ll be ready… for whatever comes my way. And I am.
What a Ride
4 months has gone by since I filmed my first video standing outside of Mendez. It was a warm, sunny, summer day- and tonight is supposed to be the first snow of the season! The training has been intense at times, my body has felt every bit of its 42 years. I’d say I’ve taken more baths since July 15 than I have since I was maybe 4 or 5 years old! I’ve laughed, I’ve cried, I’ve felt confident, I’ve felt lost, I’ve felt strong, I’ve felt weak, I’ve felt inspired, and I’ve felt discouraged. I’ve been all in, and I’ve wondered what the hell I’d gotten myself into. But I didn’t quit (though I can be honest, the thought did my mind once or twice)… It has no doubt been quite the journey, culminating in a few short hours.
Tonight all of us win. There are 32 of us competing- yes momentarily against each other- but at the end of the day we’re all on the same team fighting against cancer. Collectively we’ve raised over $1MM for this event- with one of the guys hitting over $100k alone!
I’m looking forward to getting into the ring, and then of course getting out of it. Arm up or arm down it doesn’t matter. I was there. We all were. And when that final bell of the last bout sounds, we all get to celebrate with each other and with our family and friends who have all supported us – both emotionally and financially- along our respective journeys.
Thank you to the Haymakers4Hope organization for allowing me to be a part of their team, of their story, and of their mission. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to test myself, and in this moment… to be heroic.
Thank you for tonight allowing me to be The Man in the Arena.
Much love and bliss,
BY BRIAN WALLACE, HOPE NYC VII
For those of you wondering, Brian did in fact win his bout.