Closet Fight Club


I know. The first rule of fight club is don't talk about fight club. But I'm going rogue. Because it's time to come clean. My fight club takes place on long drives and those moments before I fall asleep. And the only one in the ring is me. I fight dirty and I rarely bet on myself. I'm fighting all of the versions of me that I have been, all the versions I hope to become and the reality of who I am today. The darker facets of who I am take wild swings and pull the hair of better parts who do their best to minimize the carnage. No one looks great on the other side. I take weeks and sometimes months off of fight club, but I bully my way back into that ring eventually. 

I'm telling you all of this because I'm in transition from a wild and wonderful adventure in Hawaii to exploring a new storyline in the Pacific Northwest. And in this landslide of change I got pinned underneath the momentum for a brief moment. Which looked a lot like an emotional breakdown in front of strangers. I woke up the next day with the sinking feeling that all of these self improvement and soul searching shenanigans I've been doing have been in vain.

You can take the girl out of the insecurity, but can you take the insecurity out of the girl? Maybe not. I'll never win a fight against myself. Mostly because I'm a grudge holder. I say things to myself like, "hey remember that time you used a friend as the diving board for your sarcasm in front of a new group of people in hopes to appear funnier? Yeah, you still do that asshole." But then I apologize to the innocent victims. Dust myself off. Sprinkle grace all over the damn place. And intentionally place myself in the company of good folks who remind me that I am enough. 

After one of the last emotional train wrecks I engineered I told a wise friend that I wished I had been able to conduct myself more graciously. Her response was, "maybe next time." That's it. So simply put that I was taken aback. Maybe next time. I know that today is not the day that I retire as an ultimate fighting champion. There are plenty of bloody noses and black eyes left. But every time I beat myself up, and then beat myself up about beating myself up, I just have to remember, maybe next time. So let's break all the rules and talk about fight club. Because when we talk about it, the people we love can start watching to make sure we fight fair. Or at least give us stitches when we stumble out of the ring.

Amber Gruber