It is a unique experience to be rendered completely helpless, to be put completely at the mercy of another human being by force. I have felt complete submission of this kind once in my life; I lay on the cold, wet grass, confused, slowly regaining consciousness after being choked out. As I look back on how I have lived my life over the past couple years, this incident is one of the most influential factors. After being so overpowered by another man, I decided that I could never let this kind of thing happen to me again. I became extremely motivated to lift weights, and to learn wrestling and MMA. This experience changed my expectations for myself and helped me realize that it is in my hands to decide how I am perceived.
It was a dispute over nothing. Two guys, driven by a natural instinct to fight, finding an excuse to challenge each other. These two guys were me, a scrawny, 100lb 8th grader, and Collin a well built 22 year old. We were sitting around a bon fire with five other friends, but only six fold-out chairs. Collin suggested tap out to decide who got the last chair, and the next thing I remember is the utterly confused feeling as I regained my senses one by one. It was a full minute before I really knew what had happened: unable to break a choke hold, I had refused to tap out and collapsed unconscious on the ground. It is hard to describe the mix of relief and humiliation that I felt as I walked away from the incident. Even though I trusted and respected Collin, he had just proved my vulnerability and made me realize my lack of confidence.
I did not, however, accept my defenselessness and move on. I realized that there was no reason for me to have settled for my skinny pathetic build, and I hit the weights. I started lifting six days a week a friend of mine and within three months, had put on fifteen pounds of muscle. A full year later, I weighed 155 and bench pressed over 200lbs. This incident is also one of the main reasons I started wrestling, a sport that I have grown to love and excel in. To complete my self-improvement plan, I took a few MMA classes and got some sparring equipment and a heavy bag to practice on. Since then, I’ve spent hours in my garage letting my anger out on that bag to staying in wrestling shape. Of course I am no were close to my vision for myself, still only 5’ 8”, and well below my goal of muscular development, but I can see that it is possible.
This whole process has taught me that I am I control of my own destiny. Any goal is attainable if you work for it, and what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. This event was not the only factor contributing to my decision to change, I hated being skinny. It was however an incredible catalyst, giving me a specific reason around which to focus my efforts. It made me realize that you are born with no restrictions. No matter what your natural conditions are, they can be changed and formed to fit your ideals. Furthermore, it’s up to you to change them and the effort you put in will be directly reflected in your outcome. This experience brought to light that, when I have a goal in mind, I am incredibly motivated and focused. It has shown that I can maintain interest in a goal and continually set the bar higher and higher.
This experience has changed the way I perceive and carry myself. It has shaped me into someone who is comfortable with their abilities and willing to work to improve themselves. It has shown my ability to let setbacks help me grow and demonstrated my strong self motivation. Ultimately, I am very thankful for Collin and what he did for me, in a sense, being completely helpless has been one of the most empowering situations of my life so far.