Monthly Archives: March 2013

Embarrassing Moments of the Week

It is 50 degrees outside and sunny here in Toledo which meant I drove home with my sunroof open this afternoon after finishing my skills exam! Loving life on this Friday (: So I thought I’d switch it up a little bit and share some of my embarrassing/funny moments of the week just so that everyone can get to know me a little better. Yes, I’m a serious student, I love to think about philosophy and life, and yes I love BJJ. But I can also be silly, fun, a klutz, and awkward or embarrassing. I love both sides of myself, so I will start to share both!

         I had to take a make up quiz on Wednesday with a professor. First, I thought her office was in the wrong building. Finally made my way to the correct building on campus, but got ridiculously lost. Had to call her secretary who made me stay put while she came and found me and walked me to where I needed to be. Felt like a lost kid at an amusement park!

          During a clinical skills exam where we do a full physical on a patient, I was going to listen to her abdomen and when I went to pull my stethoscope off my neck pulled a little harder than I expected and it flung off my neck and straight at the patient. That was not good! Apologized profusely and promised I didn’t mean to do it, not sure she believed me.

          Tried to take ibuprofen out of my bag during class, opened the bottle and it spilled (quite loudly) all over the table and on the floor. Everyone turned around and looked at me.

          I learned that yoga pants are apparently God’s gift to men and that I can eat all the oreos I want as long as they go toward making me look good in yoga pants! Hahaha

          Got slapped in the face during drilling by my favorite drilling buddy totally on accident during a loop choke escape but we just about lost it laughing

          Got questioned (actually more like interrogated) in the locker room at the academy by a 7 year old about why I was there because she didn’t recognize me with my new gi/new blue belt/new blonde, straight, and shorter hair. It took 5 good minutes to convince her I really was still Meghan and not a weird new girl using Meghan’s locker.

          One from last week… we were drilling de la riva guard and I was on top and somehow managed all by myself to roll my ankle underneath me and to make sure I didn’t snap it went to fall, mid-fall realized I had no hand to stop me and fell straight onto my head. Seriously, it was a good old-fashioned thud. I think I laughed more than the guys because I know I’m a huge klutz and I’m surprised this doesn’t happen more often.

I truly believe in being able to laugh at yourself, with others, and thoroughly enjoy every moment in life no matter how embarrassing or awkward. Happy weekend everyone!!

Faixa Azul

It was once said “Don’t wait until everything is just right. It will never be perfect. There will always be challenges, obstacles, and less than perfect conditions. So what. Get started now. With each step you take, you will grow stronger and stronger, more and more skilled, more and more self-confident and more and more successful”.

Like the quote says, life is all about progress. One day we can’t walk or talk and the next thing you know you’re graduating college, running a marathon, or in my case you find yourself in medical school and training in BJJ. We as a whole tend to live our lives just waiting for what’s ahead – we think “life will be better once I hit residency, or have that great job, or get a blue belt” when what we really miss is that life is about the journey, not the destination. Each day is a little victory. I am becoming a doctor, but it’s a very slow journey and it’s all about steady progress. But it’s not the end result that has to be enjoyed otherwise I’m simply wishing 4 years of my life away– it has to be the progress that’s appreciated each and every day!

The same thing holds true for BJJ (or really any sport). Winning medals is absolutely wonderful, but there’s so much to be learned at tournaments that a medal doesn’t show. The tournament is just the end result of months of training hard, eating healthy, and putting 100% of your soul into preparing. But it’s that time spent in the academy that really shows your character, not just how you perform on competition day. Earning your next belt is an even more amazing feeling, but there’s always another belt in the distance. We can’t be so focused on the future that we fail to live in the present.

I was recently given the incredible honor of being promoted to a Ribeiro Jiu-Jitsu BLUE BELT. And that belt is affirmation from my coach that all of my hard work, dedication, blood, sweat, tears, and lots and lots of bruises have meant progress. I am day by day taking small steps to become better, stronger, more skilled, and more self-confident and the blue belt is a symbol of that. I walked through the doors of the academy on my first day and had no idea what to expect. Today I can say that jiu jitsu has helped teach me the importance of appreciating the small victories and living fully in the moment.

I have come to love BJJ and my Ribeiro family and appreciate what it has done for my life – it’s what I look forward to after a long day of studying; it’s a way to keep active; it’s a way to challenge my mind; it’s a supportive family who believes in me even when I don’t; it’s teammates who help you progress every day; it’s being part of a sisterhood; and it’s a way for me to gain confidence in myself. My journey has only just begun, but I’m already leaps and bounds ahead of where I was on that first day. And I am so incredibly excited for what the future brings.

Thank you to everyone who believes in me, helps me, and was patient enough to help a new white belt find her place and eventually make her way to blue. I know I’m incredibly lucky to have what I truly believe are the greatest coach and teammates who have pushed me to be my best and who have encouraged me when I was frustrated or upset. I’m also really blessed to have such a supportive family and friends who push me to train when I’m exhausted and never let me give up.

Ready to continue learning every day and become a better blue belt step by step and believe in steady progress!



I apologize that this is a few days late. I’m on spring break…
              First of all, my exam went very well! It was a long exam (170 questions in about 4 hours) but very fair I thought and I knew a lot of the information and was able to synthesize it. So that was a big weight off my shoulders. Also, before I delve into Chicago, the weight cut also went well! I actually ended up being 126 with the gi at weigh in and had to be under 129. The cut honestly sucked, and I wouldn’t like to repeat the experience any time soon, but it worked and I still felt healthy and strong at the end.

View from our balcony
                Chicago was FUN in so many ways. It was a trip out of Ohio, which is always exciting, to a big city with lots of shopping plus I got to test out my BJJ skills. My brother and I stayed at a very nice hotel and spent Friday night walking through downtown and ate at an incredibly delicious steakhouse (Gibsons) which I highly recommend! Saturday morning I worked out to a view overlooking the city, then we spend the day shopping on Michigan Ave (and to compensate for the delicious meal the night before ate all of a salad, tea, and a protein shake). Started freaking out a little bit about competing on Saturday night, but I am an incredibly lucky girl to have teammates who put up with me and will text me encouraging words over and over until I finally calm down.

CHI from Starbucks
  Sunday was the big day! We actually woke up early and walked downtown for a bit just to calm my nerves and get some blood flowing (plus we got caramel corn to bring home). To say I was freaking out from the moment I woke up would be no exaggeration – but it was more of an excited adrenaline rush. When we got to Chicago State I was just ready to go. Double checked my weight on the scale, sipped water, and the next thing I know I’m in the bullpen getting my gi checked. Side note, they put white belt gi competition on the day of no gi so a whole bunch of my teammates weren’t there which was kind of a bummer. But luckily some of my really good friends surprised me and came to support me! That made my day. Plus I did have really awesome teammates there and one of them ended up being a really great coach.

On the right, girl with the Ribeiro patch is me.
What I gained most from the tournament was that I need to learn to maintain a dominant position and take my time. I also need to learn to finish those gosh darn triangles, for some reason they continue to evade me! Don’t pull guard when someone has your pant leg, you’ll lose two points, and also don’t let them control your head in half guard. And regardless of the fact that I can do eight 6 minute matches in a row in the academy, 5 minutes can genuinely feel like an eternity in competition. I also learned that I need to play my game and not let them play theirs. And the standing part of the match, definitely not my favorite – should work on that. Overall, it was an incredible experience and I ended up taking home a bronze medal! Not bad for my first IBJJF tournament! [Though, I did actually miss the podium… long story.] That third place really is a TEAM effort, as I wouldn’t be where I was without the help of so many others. So it’s as much theirs as it is mine. Afterwards we got some seriously delicious deep dish Chicago pizza, some Starbucks, and headed home.
3rd place Female Adult White Belt Feather

I had such an incredible outpouring of support from all my family, classmates, friends, and teammatesthroughout the training process, the competition, and afterwards. And I want to say THANK YOU. Thank you all for pushing me to be the best I can be and for never letting me give up, even on days I may have wanted to. I am so proud to be a medical student, but I was just as proud to be competing with the Ribeiro patch on my back and with the support of my Ribeiro family.

I have another super exciting announcement to make as well, but this is already long enough. Look for the update in a few days.


My week in pictures

This is how my week has been spent… Less than 2 days until my 4.25 hour exam with 170 questions.  Less than 3 days until Chicago. Just trying to keep my head above water! (also…. I will never try to cut for a tournament the week of a big exam ever again. Sheesh I can make poor life choices).

Feeling pretty good about both. Everyone at the Academy has really made me step up my game, and I’m as prepared as I can be! But that’s not first priority… This exam is. So back to the grind!


Edit… White belts aren’t fighting until Sunday so add a day to that one.