I wasn’t quite sure what to write about this month. I had some thoughts that seemed somewhat related but I wasn’t sure how to cobble them together or they didn’t feel like enough content to justify a blog. But I guess in my experience writing these things (bi-monthly with Notorious Notes and monthly on my website), even if I feel like I don’t have to say, it often fills up more space than anticipated so let’s just dive into it and see where things go.
I got my 2nd vaccine shot last week (as of writing this) and I gotta tell you, it was just great…except that I had body aches, chills, and mild nausea the next day – but that’s a *VERY* small complaint compared to what might happen if I were to stay unvaccinated. I was also fortunate enough that I was able to arrange it so I didn’t have to do anything that whole day (it was a Friday), I was back to normal within two days (Sunday), and I did a 5 mile run on Monday. Since there is so much weird paranoia and misinformation surrounding the vaccine (and Covid in general, because there’s nothing that conservatives aren’t willing to politicize so they can ‘OwN tHe LiBs’), I want to make it very clear here that while those small symptoms that I experienced are specific to me and everyone might experience the vaccine differently, they are still immeasurably better than the alternative of getting infected with Covid (the long-term effects of which, will not be fully known for years, as the vaccines are still being developed and). It’s also very important to note that despite getting my 2nd dose of the (Pfizer) vaccine, I will not be considered “fully vaccinated” until 2 weeks after the date of receiving it, and there is also talk of need for a booster shot 12 months after being ‘fully vaccinated’.
Since I got the vaccine, I am looking into finally returning to wrestling training after more than a year away from the ring. It’s been a long road over the past 13 months where I have flip flopped back and forth between never wanting to wrestle again and missing it with my whole heart. There’s a lot of good but it often feels like there’s even more bad. It’s tough, but at the end of the day – I enjoy the performance, I miss my friends, and, if I’m being honest with myself, what would I be doing if I wasn’t wrestling? Since getting my undergrad, I hadn’t really experienced adult life without wrestling until 2020 and it definitely felt like a piece was missing. Wrestling is an outlet for me creatively, emotionally, and physically, and I find solace in my little niche within such a lovely community that I am proud to be a part of. I want to work hard to see it change and evolve. So when I do get back to training, I know it will be a very rocky road and it’ll take some time to get back into the swing of things, but I fully intend to work very hard to not just get back to where I was, but hopefully improve beyond that. That said, I don’t see myself doing any shows until I feel 100% ready, summer or fall at that absolute earliest, but realistically not until 2022 – which is fine. Safety is the most important thing to me and I won’t feel comfortable being a part of a show that could potentially endanger the wrestlers, the staff, or the fans. That means safety as far as Covid, as well as my ability to keep others safe in the ring. If I’m shaking off a year of rust, it’s gonna be a bit before I feel comfortable letting someone else trust me with their body.
I’m a pretty pessimistic person –I don’t usually get my hopes up, both consciously and subconsciously. Subconsciously, I don’t think my anxiety would allow me to in most scenarios because my brain is constantly generating as many “worst case scenarios” as possible. Consciously, I’ve seen a lot of failures and broken promises this past year, so it’s easier to just not put any faith in other people. I know neither of those things are the healthiest, and I’m working on it, but they’re survival tactics and coping mechanisms. It’s easier to protect oneself when you only have to rely on a select few others. That said, I’m actually feeling a slight glimmer of hope for the future – small tinge of optimism. And even with things getting objectively better re: Covid, there’s still a huge number of terrible, disgusting, disheartening things happening in the world: cops are still killing young unarmed black people and terrorizing people who are rightfully protesting against such violence, hate crimes against asians are still on the rise, there have been over 140 mass shootings in the U.S. just this year, state legislatures are on a warpath against our transgender siblings, and the Georgia government is working as hard as possible to disenfranchise the vast majority of their constituents. This country still sucks and is still very unsafe for most of the people I care about.
That was all pretty much one train of thought but I hate to end this on such a sobering note, so let me try and wrap this up into a neat little package before we go: The world is awful, capitalism kills, and we’re all just doing our best to survive in the world we were forced into – despite the objections a lot of us probably would’ve had. However, we must also do what we can to take care of ourselves mentally and physically. Please do not give up the fight to protect the people you care about – whatever that looks like for you. It is simply unsustainable to bear the weight of the world on one’s shoulders without making sure to take care of yourself, whatever THAT looks like. One thing I’ve seen repeated over and over in protest and mutual aid networks I’ve followed since ‘The Uprising’ last year, is that “you’re no good to anyone dead or exhausted.” You can’t help anyone if you’re unable to help yourself. So get your rest, drink lots of water, don’t forget to eat, consume some media (shows, movies, video games, comics, books), exercise, meet up with friends, find a nice hobby, and get vaccinated. But make sure to set some time and energy aside (even if it’s just a little) to educate yourself or educate and/or empower others or sign petitions or call representatives or take part in mutual aid or donate time/money to causes or protest or whatever feels right to help others who need a voice right now.
I hope that was a decent wrap up. Forgive me if it came off too soapbox-y, I was honestly just talking to myself at the end there. But maybe it helped you too? I hope so. Take care of yourself.
THE WORLD IS YOUR BURRITO
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