The heavy bags danced to the beat of our strikes. To my left, Herman Terrado. To my right, Dominick Cruz. Echoing in the back, Coach Eric Del Fierro. The room was packed with killers that day but the two who flanked my shoulders as we finished practice was them.
Where was I?
Another world. Another time. Another dimension.
I’d been here before. With these exact same people. But it was different. The same, but different. I was different. They were different. But things were also not.
When I lived here last, this was who I was rolling with. An Undisputed—Alliance blend of badasses. Eric was the one who set up my pro-debut. Dominick cornered me that night. Herman fought too. Was his third if memory serves me right.
These were my dudes. This was my team. Crazy to think of how many fight camps I’d been a part of too. Even further back was triple OG, Rolando Perez. That’s who I sparred last before we transitioned to the bags. I’d met him at City Boxing even before the Undisputed and Alliance days — when he used to leg kick the shit out of me, haha. Still swings a nasty axe! Left me with a couple souvenirs on my thigh in case I’d forgotten. Actually, there was something I forgot. He fought that night too. The night that I had my debut. Man, what a different time that was. Twenty-three years old, fresh out of college, and only one thing on my mind: becoming a world champion.
What the fuck was going on? It was like I’d walked through a portal into a parallel universe. A portal into the past, but not the past at all.
I was one hundred percent in the present. Here. Now. Living life. Letting go. Listening to flow. And this is where I am. This is where it took me. To this room, with these people, at this time.
Something's happening. That’s for damn sure. And it’s quite exciting if I do say so myself.
Somehow I’d managed to slide through a glitch in the matrix and return to a realm that I thought only existed in the past... a part of my life that I'd put down years ago and buried underneath my decision to walk a different path. And yet somehow that path led me back to this one.
Who knows... maybe it was an illusion... maybe it's actually the same path...
Duality brought me here. She told me I could do both. Be both. Am both.
Both writer and fighter.
Both warrior and wizard.
Both… or nothing if I chose.
Was this rip in the matrix just deja vu?
Or have I unknowingly entered round two?
I guess the only way to find out is to continue walking the path.
I don't know for sure what lies ahead, but I do know that the path is the way.
April 14, 2022