A Reflecting Arab Muslim Girl From Around the Corner

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Karate Release.

I'm laying in bed and am on my smart phone. While I feel full from the inside...a part of me is empty. I get like this once a month when I miss God. I'm not ready to fall asleep yet. So let me write.

I'm under the blanket and the room is dark. A familiar scene. As a girl growing up, the most powerful lyrics for me were this: "Don't you know my tears will burn the pillow..set this place on fire cause Im tired of your lies" (from All Cried Out by En Vouge). I spent a lot of nights...a lot...crying myself to sleep. Its like a battle in your insides. Your heart is hurt, your mind is confused, your body is unsure...you are just fighting a war inside you. I sleep with my face into the pillow...its just the way sleep...but I think it began to stop myself from feeling the tears roll down my face...if they fall right into the pillow, the reality of their existence is truncated.

I recently joined karate. It has been a moving experience. The first day, I put so much passion into each kick, each punch, that I felt as if memories that we buried down for so long just resurfaced. It was tiring....exhausting. The trainer even commented that I was fierce..he asked 'you sure this isn't a therapy session?' I didn't think it was...but that night and for two nights after I couldn't sleep. Too much pain was coming out...too much anger...I was awaken every few hours from body-jerks. All I wanted to do was wake up the next morning to kick and punch some more.

But who is this anger directed towards? Is it to him? Yes of course...but its not that I imagine his face being punched in and his nose bleeding. No. Rather, I imagine fighting all my internal battles. Punching them till I come out victorious. Showing myself that I am stronger than who I thought I was. Proving to him that he had no right to corner me the way he did. Karate has surely become therapeutic.

I no longer think of him when I'm at the club, but I do know why I have so much passion for the art. No one should ever make you feel so weak, so vulnerable that you don't know what to do to fix your situation... or worse, how to get out of it. No one has that right. I often wonder whether if I was physically strong I would have been able to pull out a lot sooner than I did. If whether I was stronger outside, I would have found the strength inside to calm my confusion and ask myself what I really wanted.

They are both connected...your internal and external strength. One without the other renders both suboptimal. Would I have left if I felt stronger? I think so. I just regret not having realized that till now.


  1. You have a story to tell that will help others. You are very brave.

  2. Is is helping me more than you can imagine, and I'm a lot older than you. I'm so glad I found this blog through my dear friend wrinkledman. I have to hide my identity even to comment on this blog. I have read every post in one sitting...

  3. Hello Shelley,
    I am so grateful that you have found benefit from me sharing my story. I am going through some major realizations over the past few days - I have much to update. One question that has been on my mind is that while someone may be the source of our anger, should they be the reason for our growth? I'm not so sure.
    Thank you for reading - please do share your thoughts when you can.