Falling off a mountain.

Monday night was D-day for my red belt. The sparring the week before went well, and i was all preped to do the rest of it Saturday after helping out with the kids Master Class but the CDB with whom i sparred and i were both too banged up still to complete our respective testing.

so Monday night i'm back at it again, we start our forms and i'm flying but have had a noticeable mood shift earlier in the day and can see that i'm heading for a trough... bi-polar will serve it up like that when you so don't need it! The training has certainly helped heaps, but i think because of all of the training i'm doing, the dissapointment of the accident and the constant set backs to the completion of this goal has had me on a manic high for a few weeks i was certain to have a drop off of my mood sooner than later.
So i'm flying through my forms and ZANG!!!! i don't know what i'm doing...seriously, i have forgotten what i'm doing! Bizarre!

I try to continue on, but am fully blank; can't even think of the first move to the next form so i step back. Same again for the next one and in my head i am plummeting. I approach the Master and mumble some pathetic excuse and ask to be dismissed, to go home. I can't believe i'm saying it but i'm in a state of confussion. A pin prick of light in my mind and i hear my son say his own personal mantra, "quitting is NOT an option!" I ask to stay actually, but to take 5 and am told to go into the kitchen to chill.

After about 10 minutes the 4th dan comes for a drink and asked i was ok...i wasn't, but had resolved to stay and try no matter how blank my mind was.

We went out and continued in a small group to do our forms and i was dead set hopeless! could barely put together 3 moves before stalling. But i just held on, strained my brain and longed for it to be over. These are things i know very well, and have been practicing for a year now, so that was the most frustrating bit. with 20 minutes left the Master told the 4th dan to send me over to do the self defence elements to my grading... if i wanted to. I declined, and added that i had trained so hard to get to a point i felt like i could do this grading justice and well, there was no way i wanted to do it with this empty head thing i had going on at the moment and do a half arsed job of it This was accepted and i continued on bumbling through my forms. I was feeling extremely depressed, not just because of my failing to do somethings i'm well versed in, but i could sense that it was more a part of a down turn from the weeks of being on a big high.

I finally found rythm in a form that is an element to this next grading only to be told at the end that i was doing part of it wrong...and i had been practicing it this way for 6 weeks! DAMN!
I gave the 4th dan a look like, "are you sure?" and he asked for my book so he could prove it. Without thinking i ran to get my book and nearly ran between the Master and the student he was watching grade. I would tear strips off kids for doing that and i was so not switched on i had gone to do it myself! I felt even worse! I apologised ran around behind, looked at my book and realised i had to relearn this form as i was wrong! Not a good night.

At the end of class i congratulated my friend that had graded and bailed out way quicker than i normally would.

I was up most of the night in a deep funk and when i finally fell asleep was in no condition to get up for work the next morning. When i got up i rang work, freshened up and went to the Dojang as i knew there was a mums morning TKD class on. When they came out i apologised for my mood, dummy spit, attitude and general behaviour; to which i was told none was needed. Some friends talked about what i could do to get over it and then the Master asked if i wanted to get a coffee with him. We did and had some great conversation and i walked away with a new sense of purpose and calmness and a resolve to try again later.

I know what the cause of my meltdown was, and am still pretty down, but in the classes i have done since then i have been able to implement change in how i approached that night.
Bipolar has many unique challenges and i am still only learning how to acknowledge and work through them; no doubt TKD has helped but i need to be aware that while i'm working hard and not feeling any depression that i am suseptable to Newton's 3rd law of motion, and the quality of the high is directly comparable to the severity of the low...way to go!