Sr. Judo Nationals Day 3 & 4

Disclaimer: This post was composed several months. Therefore some of the details are fuzzy. I know that the previous post was rather informative and promised a good post for the remaining couple of days. However, considering the results of the fights themselves, I got discouraged and didn’t write about the experience. To keep this blog up to date, I’m going to fill in as much as I remember.  

Day 3: Sunday, May 4

Today was the day of truth. The moment when I didn’t know what will happen. Granted, I felt like I was going to succeed, but wasn’t confident in my abilities. I was scared and unsure. All in all, I didn’t know what would happen to me.

We entered the competition site early that morning and rested while other competitors duked it out. After waiting until well after 3 PM, I finally went up against my first opponent. Unfortunately, she caught me off guard and I lost the match. Discouraged, after watching several other matches, I was up against my second opponent. She too caught me off guard and swept my foot from beneath me. After both matches came to an end, I immediately stepped off the mat and fell apart in my coach’s arms. I tried to stop my tears, but was overwhelmed with a sense that I failed. I hurried into a deserted hallway and let the tears fall full force.

I accepted my bronze medal and took pictures with my teammates. We had good results overall and our coach was proud of our accomplishments.

Our team dinner consisted of pizza and appetizers. It was nice to see everyone gathered and enjoying conversation. Some of our team members were not able to make it to dinner. After dinner, everyone went to their respective rooms to retire for the night. We were going home the next day.

Day 4: Monday, May 5

I woke up at 3:50 AM PST. After semi-frantically packing the rest of my suitcase, I did a final room check and headed downstairs at around 4:25. This is why I don’t sleep before flying. I’m always late…

We had two flights. One to AZ and then our connection to Chicago. Both flights were fairly uneventful. I arrived home exhausted and a little deluded, but overall, was happy with my experience. I mean, really, how could I be upset after an experience like that?

I met Paralympians and I fought a Paralympic level judo player. It doesn’t get any better than this. It obviously won’t get any worse.

I would say that my trip to Reno was to an extent, a failure, but really, it was a victory, one I will never forget.