My last test sticks with me as one of the worst days of my life. Poring out energy and confidence. Well refined skill, endurance, resilience. Knee to one inch every time, all day. Gaining respect from everyone watching and losing my own. A little over five year's work. Bruises, cuts, and a bloody nose at least once a month. But I'm sort of a bleeder. One of the highest scores he's given.
Making about $500 a month and putting $200 back in to training. $200 to the line of credit. The rest is gas. Maybe food if I'm lucky. I wasn't in school. My parent's didn't respect me. I had few friends, and a relationship was a distant illusion at best. 21 years old.
A month later I would do the thing that tore my life apart. The time I spent training might be the only thing that has kept me together since then.
My obstacles are not imaginary. Drugs will only make me ignore them. I need to put the right words in the right order in the right time and the right place. I've been trying so hard to build it back, but I know none of you want me to win.
Winning is not a trophy. It's just a quiet, peaceful survival. This system. It creates the homeless people from criminals and criminals from homeless people. Is there ever a road back to "just people"?