By Mr. Anonymous
Dear Ronda Rousey. You don’t know me, I don’t know you and I can only hope I ever experience your company, which I would genuinely enjoy.
But I can also hope that maybe your eyes glance to this article and read these words that I’ve prepared for you. Because I for one care about you. You have been a role model to women and another person unashamed to say she likes nerdy things like Pokemon or Dragon Ball Z. I was genuinely upset when you lost to Holly Holm and I hope you get your title back.
I also am a person who went through multiple years of suicidal thoughts. Ronda, I woke up every day and I’d pray that I would die in order to go to a better hell than the one I was living. I won’t go into graphic details, but when I saw that you had had suicidal thoughts, I knew exactly what you were feeling to a degree.
My own thoughts came from an anxiety disorder that orbited around obsessive compulsive disorder. I’d get a thought of wanting to die and then OCD on that though to make a vicious circle that was crippling me. I was borderline catatonic and still losing weight because I wasn’t eating.
Now, I’m sitting in my living room, writing you this letter because I got better. Oh sure, I have the occasional thought and then I sass it away because committing suicide truly is a stupid thing to do when this life is so beautiful and there is so much to live for. Ronda, you have even more than I have to live for because your stature in the community known as the world gives you a unique position.
Ronda Rousey, you aren’t just a fighter. You are not just Ronda Rousey: UFC Badass or Buttkicker or whatever nickname a person can give you. You are Ronda Rousey, a woman with a slight identity crisis. I hope you’ve gotten better since the loss and you’ve spoken about the suicidal thoughts, which is a good thing. Keeping those things padlocked inside your mind is a terrible idea.
In the chance that you are still struggling and are still wondering who you are at this point, then please take this advice. You need to find out who you are. Ronda, I know how much UFC means to you. You’ve easily devoted over 10,000 hours to training which is why, no disrespect to Holm, I think you’re the absolute best at what you do. Even Ali lost a few fights.
But because you’ve devoted so much time to fighting, you’ve caused your own personality to have deficits in other key areas of your life. You’re no different than a mom who spends all her time around the kids and then experiences Empty Nest syndrome because now that the kids are away then she wonders what she must do now to stay active. Many sports people become coaches after their playing days because they don’t have an identity outside of the sport.
Now, I do not recommend you becoming a coach. Or to be accurate “just a coach.” Nor do I think you should just have children and become “just a mother” either. You need to discover more than just one thing that defines Ronda Rousey than fighter or mother or coach or any one single thing. You need to become Ronda Rousey, the combo plate special. You need to become Ronda Rousey the fighter, the mother perhaps, the coach maybe, but there’s more to it than that.
What are your passions Ronda? Beyond Pokemon and comic books. Although acting may be an option for you (please please please be Captain Marvel PLEASE!!!), I also think that you can become more than even that.
Are you good at drawing? Painting? I’d love to see the artworks of Ronda Rousey. Maybe you’re not good at it. How about a chef? Or a baker? Granted of course, the idea of an athlete who starves herself knowing about fine cuisine is rather farfetched, I’d never underestimate you. Say cooking is a passion, then maybe you can make a cookbook for the ladies who want to be as fit and tough as you, but they eat beyond the prototypical workout nutrition.
You can open a gym and help the obese. Become an instructor on the Biggest Loser (I think that show is still on), you can become a TV personality, you can become a writer beyond your biography. You can become a historian of your sport or a fiction writer based on some of your own matches perhaps. You can join the military or buy a winery (that’s what NBA coach Gregg Popovich has done).
Ronda, I remember a scene in Captain America 2 where Rogers is running with Falcon and had the same sense of “Who am I?” going through his mind and Falcon told him that he can do anything he wanted to do.
Well, Captain Rousey, you can do anything you want to do. You aren’t just a fighter. You have too much personality for that. You aren’t just anything unless you choose to be only one thing. That’s why you had the thoughts. Ronda, while I support your decisions to keep fighting and I’ll be rooting for you to beat Holly Holm, I also caution against getting so wrapped up in being a fighter that you have a repeat episode of this once you retire.
Ronda, see if you can try to spare an hour a week. Just an hour a week to think about what intrigues you. Maybe traveling? Any of the things I’ve already mentioned as well? Or ooh! What about teaching? I could see you holding discipline in any high school class. Or even being a nurturer with the elementary kids.
NBA player Pau Gasol is interested in medicine. Perhaps you could be a nurse or even a doctor? OH! What about becoming a vocal member of anti domestic violence? Like an ambassador if you will for various organizations. Do seminars not just to people who are victims, but to men in prison so they can reform!
Also, you have your charities that you support, perhaps you can start your own? Ronda, to be quite frank, you could become a Comic Con icon and help organize events as well as have your own booth. You are that fantastic. Absolutely fantastic and I mean that to Ronda Rousey the person, not Ronda Rousey the fighter. Fighting is what made you known, it’s not what made you who you are inside.
Take that person inside of you and let her do some exploring and you’ll discover that once fighting is over, then your life isn’t ending, but beginning a new book of adventures and magic.
That goes for not just you, but for anyone suffering an identity crisis. Go out and find out the sides of yourselves that you never even touched or entertained before. I discovered Comic Con two years ago and I embraced it. I found out that I love to write more than just sports pieces after six years of straight sports writing. Because I went out and explored who I was, I am able to write this piece and tell you to do the same. Please do the same.
And always remember. We are all different people at evolving points in our lives. We never stop learning and growing. Don’t let the occasional darkness keep you from seeing the never-ending beauty that is life.
Sincerely, a person who cares about you, Ronda Rousey.