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A pummel to victory: continued

They stood me up, and the ref says “good job”. I’m making whooping noises as though I had just gotten off a rollercoaster, or perhaps… as though I had outswam a shark. However, I knew I had “lost”.
Stumbling a bit, I make my way for the open cage door.
I recalled that as I had lay flat on the mats, I was able to make out the muffled sounds of Jeff’s fans cheering for him. I had been gone though. My body dissappeared for a second, and as the call was made, one minute and twenty seconds via stoppage due to strikes, actually a knockout from my perspective of course, I was plucked from my previous life as the no-throw Buddhist hippie geek, and placed in a position of true reverance and admiration for the sport of MMA.
They stopped me before I could exit the cage, and led me to where Jeff stood, victorious. They raised his hand, holding mine in the down position. Again, his fans cheered. Jeff came over and gave me a giant hug, and I realized that I had been smiling, and I was still in awe at how incredible the experience itself was.
Exiting the cage, I was greeted by Ben, Dustin Praxedes’ corner man who had taken me as a stray for the bout, and Adam Larm, who came in as my water man. As I headed back to the trailer outside of the Point Casino, I was stopped by my friends, and commended for “having balls”. James Bergstrom patted me on the back and said “you did it”. Carl Edwards says “I’m proud of you man”. Multiple sentiments are being given to me on my trek through the crowd, and Jeff would later say that I really surprised him. Suddenly, “losing” wasn’t what I saw as having happened.
I wanted a piece of this world ever since I was a child, but I just didn’t realize it. I have been battling doubt, discomfort, inconvenience, fear, ignorance, anger, jealousy, hate, sadness, and laziness for my entire life. When I faced Jeff, and shot those jabs in his face, and tried to put him on the ground, all those strange politics of life evaporated, leaving only a straight line to a goal. That goal is to keep fighting.
I am a fighter. I should have known about this.
I want to write about this sport, and that part of ourselves that we leave behind when we enter the cage.

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