November 6th. 19 days after I had completed a black belt test; the test where I had earned my conditional first degree black belt.
November 6th. 8 days prior to the semi-annual Black Belt Extravaganza where I would finally receive my conditional first degree black belt.
8 short days from receiving the belt I had worked over three years to get. 8 days.
I woke up numb.
Not emotionally numb because I had just spent 13 weeks of working out 25 hours a week for 13 weeks and had to basically shut down my life to achieve my goal. Nope, that is not what I am talking about.
I woke up physically numb. My hands were tingling with the pins and needles sensation you get when you go numb from remaining in one place for too long. The bottom of my feet were, too. But the weirdest part of all of it was my core was numb, too. Starting at my upper abs spanning all the way down to the top of my knees, front and back. But this part wasn’t pins and needles numb. Oh, no. This was like I had just received an epidural-numb. If you have never had an epidural, here is an example of how it felt: if I scratched the skin on my stomach, I couldn’t feel the scratching on my skin, but the muscles below that area of the skin could feel the pressure of my fingers scratching.
I woke up wondering, “What in the ever-living hell is going on with my body?” It was bizarre.
So, I did what any educated individual with health insurance would do to get an accurate and immediate diagnosis.
I made a doctor’s appointment. I went on WebMD.com.
After a thorough
check-up search of my symptoms, my doctor WebMD came back with two possible diagnoses.
Option One: A pinched nerve. Okay, I can deal with that.
Option Two: Multiple Sclerosis. Uh, yeah, but no. Pinched nerve, it is!
After a few x-rays, my doctor decided that I potentially had just a pinched nerve, and we proceeded with treatment for a pinched nerve. That is, until the third appointment, when my doctor asked me to put my chin to my chest, and when I did, I jumped. It felt like an electronic shock went shooting through the top of my legs. When I told her why I jumped, she stepped back, put her hands in the air and said the four words I never wanted to hear:
“You need a neurologist.”
All I could do was drop my head. And feel the electric shocks shoot through my legs, again.
And here we go… Today’s black belt characteristic I would like to highlight is integrity. Specifically, having the integrity to say what is right, to do what is right, and to expect everyone on your team to do what is right. No exceptions. Hmmm, I think I just discovered my next post topic. Stay tuned…