The Monthly Lead is a collection of Stories, Articles, Polls, & Interviews from our Sundown United Senior Staff. The Lead, from across America to Korea, spotlights community in all its different shapes and beautiful varieties in a monthly theme that is discussed, debated, and decided amongst our fans and SDU staff. A Lead to inspiration. Welcome to September Theme – FALL

chacesduBy Chace Acosta – Lead Contributor // Dallas

Fall is my favorite. I can usually say that it’s the best time of my year. What’s not to love? There’s football, the race for the pennant in baseball, the evening cool when you can drive with all your windows down with the music blaring and you don’t sweat. I live in Texas where the summer seems to never end and we appreciate being able to roll down our windows. It’s all about the little things for me. It’s close enough to the holidays to look forward to them without the panic that comes later in the year. There’s boots and sweaters and pumpkin latte’s! OH MY!

This year is a bit different for me. Most of you reading this know that my motto is “That which does not kill me had better start running.” Well this year, I feel like I don’t have much fight left in me and maybe this thing is going to get the best of me. What’s the problem you ask? As I wrote about last month, I once again, am nursing an injury. I had to have my ACL, MCL and medial and lateral meniscus rebuilt. I’ve had 2 major surgeries in less than a year and my body is rebelling. This has become very difficult for me mentally and emotionally. Have you ever experience constant pain that lasts for months? Not like every now and then your shoulder flares up or once in a while your toes hurt when you do certain movements, I’m talking about pain like Mike Trout is beating on your leg with a baseball bat and it is constant. You can’t sleep. You can’t move like you normally do. Also, you can’t complain anymore. No one wants to hear it and you are tired of saying it.

More than that, your whole life has changed. Almost everything that you look forward to everyday is gone, because you can’t do it. You physically can’t.

This is where I am right now.

I feel like I am living in another person’s body. A body that is foreign to me, that won’t cooperate with me, a body whose nerves and muscles are not connected to the brain except for the pain. Yes the physical pain is bad, but the mental stress is by far the worst. The depression that has set in has made me a miserable person to be around.

I try to tell myself this is all temporary. I should rest and take care of myself. But today makes 13 weeks since my surgery and 15 weeks since I was injured. I have gained 15 pounds. I am out of shape. I am sad. I am out of sorts. I am not myself. What’s worse, there is not a damn thing I can do about it. Working out has always been my therapy, my outlet for stress, the thing I look forward to when work sucks or the kids are driving me crazy. Jiu Jitsu has saved me and become such a part of my life that I can’t imagine my life without it. Crossfit has become my daily competition fix, every day competing with yourself to make yourself better than you were the day before. Making my body stronger and the way I feel nature intended it to be.

All of this is on hold, indefinitely for now. I did manage to go to 2 yoga classes last week and modify them so that my broken down body could actually complete them. I felt so defeated even in this yet I know that doing this will help me heal. It’s a strange dichotomous relationship because while there is nothing more in the world that I want to do than to get back out there. Ignore the pain. Ignore the doctor. That fire is very alive inside of me.  The brave stupid kid that didn’t know any better is still kicking around inside of my older wiser soul, that kid that needs to be listened to sometimes. That kid that has kept me young in a lot of ways but still needs to be reined in. THAT kid, still thinks I am 22 and invincible. There is also an almost paralyzing fear. I’m terrified to do anything that might cause me more pain or another injury. I know that this is normal, and more than normal, it’s healthy. You gotta balance out that crazy kid right? But it doesn’t make it easy.

I wish I knew the answers to any of this because to be honest I’m in the throes of it. Like I said before, I feel like this is about to overtake me. So where is the balance between brave kid and wise adult? How do you conquer your fear and your self-loathing without being a complete idiot who doesn’t listen to their body? The fight, the struggle is a difficult balancing act. I know a lot about fighting when you feel like you don’t have any more fight in you. I know about that inner grit, that anger, the fire that has to come alive. The utter “not gonna quit” deep down in your gut that steels your resolve to keep going in spite of the pain, in spite of the ache in your lungs and the exhaustion in your muscles. That’s what I’m trying to hold onto right now. No matter how sad I am. How defeated I feel. How bleak the situation. After I make it through this, I’m sure I’ll be looking back on the lessons I learned, but right now, I’m doing all I can to make it through. And maybe that’s exactly where I’m supposed to be this fall?

Here’s to hoping that I learn all the lessons I need to learn this time around so I don’t have to go through this ever again!

SNDWN_profilepic2Cheers with your Pumpkin Spiced Latte’s!

That which does not kill me had STILL better start running (I’ll catch you eventually),

Peace and Love,

Chace

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Written by The Sundown United

The SUNDOWN UNITED is a multi-faceted project that houses an apparel and accessories brand, and online-magazine(weblogs/articles). All ends of and begins with the Sundown United our trademark, lifestyle, attitude, and personal perspective on Americana art/lifestyle subculture.

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