I am a forty year old ex-drunk who wants to fight Muay Thai. This might all seem like an impossible dream; you might even think that I’m a bit reckless to even consider it – these thoughts have crossed my mind too. Thai kick boxing is one of the fiercest fighting arts on the planet, and entering a ring with somebody trained in this art is probably not the most sensible way to be dealing with a mid-life crisis – but there it is. This idea has been playing around in my head for a few years now and it just won’t go away. The idea of actually going through with it scares the shit of me, but also fills me with a great deal of excitement too.
As well as seeming crazy and impossible, stepping into a Muay Thai ring seems a bit inevitable – my life is like that. I don’t know how exactly it is going to happen, but wheels are in motion to take me to that day. It might take a couple of years, but that’s where I’m heading. I have always found that the best way to deal with an impossible goal is to break it down into manageable little goals. Sometimes this break down into little goals happens without any conscious effort from me. My recent act of trying to get back into shape by purchasing a punch bag now seems like a small step on the path to my final goal.
So why does this 40 year old want to fight Muai Thai?
Before alcohol took over my world a big love of mine was martial arts. Throughout two decades of pissing my life away I would often stop to wonder about what would’ve happened if I’d have just kept at the martial arts. Looking back then it seemed like the only time I’d been happy in my life. I felt like I’d really missed out and I loathed myself a bit because of it.
Here I am over twenty-three years since my last martial arts class (unless you count Tai-Chi) and a part of me wants to recover that thing I lost to alcohol. Of course, I could just join a Karate class here in Bangkok; that would probably be a much more sensible choice for a middle aged person like me. This doesn’t appeal to me so much though. I want to be challenged, and Muay Thai is certainly going to do that. I also want to face my fears and the idea of learning Muay Thai here in Thailand is going to involve overcoming many of these.
Can a Man in Middle Age fight Muay Thai?
The one thing that I’ve found in recovery from addiction that anything really is possible. This is what happens when we give up booze or drugs. We get to live the life we were meant to live and we get to watch our childhood dreams come true. This is what makes life in recovery so great and it is why every drunk and addict owes it to themselves to escape addiction and love life.
The fact that I’ve made my secret dream public knowledge puts even more pressure on me to make it a reality – that’s part of my reason for publishing this post. I don’t have any real plan of action except that I want to get into better physical shape over the next few months. I’ve read the Muay Thai books and seen the videos and now is the time to take some real action.