“I suddenly couldn’t breathe!”

New guy in class this morning. Tim had me roll with him for his first round. I caught a choke. He tapped and looked around a bit wide-eyed. “I suddenly couldn’t breathe!”

Yes, dear, that’s how chokes work.

There was another new guy a couple weeks ago. Same choke, only he didn’t tap, so I just held it and waited and tightened it a little bit. Tim suddenly came over and said, “Do you know how to tap?” Kid shook his head. Oops! I released and then we taught him about tapping.

On the injury front, I got dropped on my head one night. I’d locked on to a guy’s turtle and was trying to take his back; he locked on to me and rolled sideways, driving my head straight down into the mat. Ow. I tapped to that, then sat out the rest of the night. No concussion, though it did jack up my already jacked-up shoulder (which I hurt stretching in bed one morning, bleh).

Another day, I had my ankle taped up. It wasn’t actually injured; I had a massive mat burn on one side that wasn’t healing (because it kept getting scraped off), so had taped it — and of course, with jiu-jitsu, you gotta tape everything like you broke it, or it comes right off in the first roll. I rolled with a visiting guy; he didn’t ask about my ankle, but he dove immediately for an ankle lock on the taped side. Duuuuuuuuude….. -.-

I’ve still been filling in teaching in the mornings when needed. Last week, I taught all the morning classes! I still panic and get nervous before teaching and worry that I’ll do it completely wrong. Then sometimes when I sit out a round due to odd numbers, I see the guys doing the moves that I taught them (and it works!) and I feel like maybe I might know what I’m doing. (They even sometimes use my moves on me, and that also makes me happy.)

My game still feels like 1 tiny step forward, 3 giant steps back, sigh. I’ve been working on butterfly spinny-hooky stuff, and that’s going alright enough, but now my passing is garbage. I can usually have decent success with stuff on white and blue belts and sometimes with purples (when they want to play). But most of the time the purples massacre me, and the blacks, sheesh, we’re not even playing the same game. Feels like as much of a gap between me and them as what that new guy this morning seemed to feel with me. (He kept stopping to say, “What just happened?!” or “How did you do that?!”)

I’m still training 3 mornings and 3 evenings. It is kind of a lot, and by Friday night especially, I’m tired. And Friday night is nogi, so that’s not a great time to be tired, because everyone’s slippery and I can’t slow them down with grips. Still, I don’t know how long this window of time to get more training in will last, so I’m getting there as much as I can.

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