Skip to main content

I'm not your fortunate son

 I'm not your fortunate son

As I was preparing for my first MMA Fight in autumn of 2010, my coach and some of the men in the all male fight gym wondered what would be my selection for my walk-out song. I knew we'd have a good audience in Atlantic City. So, I decided since I never felt too fortunate. As I was nearly always considered the non-athlete athlete. I struggled in anything athletic. Yet, the one thing I had and got going for me, was my pain tolerance, my willingness to keep going regardless of how bleek the outcome may seem. And my unwillingness to become completely dismayed.

I thought about comments my coach Phil, the men in the gym, and a couple of former coaches had said and implied to me. A line from my fight coach "You're the son your father always wanted." Yep, that's about the size of it. And seriously, it had been implied when I was a child by some family friends and some of their workers. 

As the fight got closer, I realized I couldn't have them play Verde, too down. Chopin, too soft. And Good God not Vivaldi, and definitely not Mozart. It had to be an audience grabber. It had to represent the blood and sweat of the men I trained with. And it had to be tongue in cheek liberating. It had to liberate me. It had to be a truth about me and how I truly felt about my childhood as a lesser considered human.  Yes, that is how I always felt.  Lesser. Yes, the women, girls who decided to step anywhere  but in the kitchen, were slowly brought down to... below size. I needed to liberate that. 

So, on a sunny Saturday morning, I arrived in Phil Dunlap's basement gym early. My Fight coach was speaking with who became my many years wrestling partner, Peter. Disciplined, 6'4" in height, and 190lb linguistic genius who had fought in Japan. After I  took off my shoes that morning, I stepped through the open caged door onto the red mats. 

I paused halfway in, "So I got an idea. I think I have my walkout song for my first fight." I paused, hoping for approval. They turned my way, "Yeah", they chorused.

I continued, "So um. It's by CCR. I'm thinking... I ain't your fortunate one. 'Cause I ain't your fortunate son. I am a woman. I am an older, working, middle-class  mom. And I am like the son a father would have wanted. If I were a guy, my Dad would have been in his glory. But here I stand, liberated by my husband and you guys. So, I ain't your fortunate son. So, what'd yah think?"  They both smiled. Peter replied, "Yep, I get it. It's good. And it's you." Phil responded, "Real good choice..."---Jody-Lynn  Reicher


Popular posts from this blog

The Reicher's Official Holiday Letter

  “When it is dark enough, you can see the stars.” ---Ralph Waldo Emerson There are many ways to shed light on seemingly impossible situations or what we would consider obstacles to our daily living. It is not always in our daily intake and output that is the measurement of a human being. It is the grind. Some people struggle with miniscule grinds; while others have bus loads to grind through. Some don’t make it. Few do. Making it, is not, not dying. It’s progressing through even when there appears no light at the end of the tunnel. That there may not even be a twinkle of a star in the nights ahead. And the human that faces that, knowing full well that they can’t change the ending to their earthly story. Yet, they consciously go through the process, has made it. They’ve lived. No matter their age, I believe that, to be one of Life’s truths. As this year has progressed, the pandemic actually blessed us. Yep. Many would not agree with that. But then, they weren’t us. They weren’t our

To Laconia and Canada Too

 He began, "So, I got this deal..."  Me, "Yeah?" Norman,  "I went up on 23, and saw her. " Me, "Where did you go?" Norman, "Sport Spot on 23 South.  And there she was." Me, "Uh oh."😊 Norman,  "I'm graduating to a BMW.  She was sitting there. 1986, an R80RT. A touring sportster... " Me, "What about the Yamaha, Norm?" Norman, "I'll get a buyer before I have to pick up the R80RT." It was 1987, we'd just had a semi long motorcycle ride up North together for a week. New England that'd be.  Norman was all enthralled about the open road. Married just over three years at the time, and he rediscovered a new love.  Me wary, yet curious.  'Maybe she'll ride easier.  Less bumpy on certain roadways of upstate New York'. Norman even had me considering getting a motorcycle license.  I'd driven nearly every style, engine from small military jeep to tractor trailers...

Completion of Humanness

Completion of Humanness As we arrive to the completion of the first year without Norman, I had decided long before he'd passed that I would continue to do things certain things he liked yet could no longer do. I decided I would not take a day off of fitness.  I would run at least for 500 days in a row. I began that in early 2020.  I'd not be concerned with the distance I'd run. It was the very thing I convinced Norman and the thing that mattered to him, from the very first discussion we had August 11th, 1981, was fitness. I loved that he was a College Boy. He loved that I was a Marine. We tickled each other's soul with such admirations. Later fitness continued as an old discussion from 1994 ...getting outside and to run no matter what. I would say to him, "Run 200 meters, then 400 meters. If it doesn't feel good, stop. Turn around and walk back home and know you did your best. That is all you can ask of yourself." I said this,  knowing he would get dow