I started training Brazilian Jiu Jitsu after watching some old Gracie videos on YouTube. I was fascinated by how a smaller person could overpower and beat a larger opponent using leverage and body mechanics.
In the Fall of 2017 everything changed. My son was diagnosed with a rare heart disease and there was only a 5% success rate of the many surgeries he would have to undergo. During this stressful and heartbreaking part of my life, my time on the mats was what brought me peace. It was the one aspect of my life that I could control when everything else was beyond my control. Training taught me courage, persistence, and temperance.
Ultimately, my wife and I lost our son and I fell into a deep depression. Having my BJJ classes to look forward to each day was what got me through and literally saved my life. It was through this that I realized BJJ can teach us to never give up. To never lose hope.