There is a hero in all of us. A hero is a person who can give a little extra and perform at their best while giving influence to those they surround themselves with. When I was young boy I was told that the greatest leaders in the world are those who know themselves. They are aware of their strengths and weaknesses.
Looking back on wrestling and past events I can recall before my state championship being told to fight the fight of my life. Ever since that last championship match I feel as though I’m still fighting that fight.
Wrestling allowed me to accomplish things I would have never of thought possible because it was wrestling that showed me that I had a high aptitude for learning and executing. Along with my natural ability to do things I also had wrestling to thank for my endurance as I was full time student, a full time worker, and wrestled for the U of A during a collapsing 2008 economy. My schedule was hard and rigorous. With a car that decided when it would take me out to drive, I used to ride my bike to college, to work, and all around Tucson to get where I needed to make ends meet. I was even fortunate that a wrestling filled family, let me stay with them as life proved more difficult. That brought me temporary solace. But it was during these hard times I would remind myself that I am a wrestler. I’ll live on just as I did when I had all those grueling weight cuts and countless hours of hard physical wrestling that led me to extreme exhaustion. I will get through the storm. Wrestling taught me that! I will adapt and overcome! With that wrestling mindset it allowed me to embark on my greatest journey in 2010 when I went to Nanjing, China to go to school for a small period of time. Wrestling allowed me to remove fear; it even opened the world of mixed martial arts into my present life.
Through wrestling I was fortunate enough to train and help coach with teams like Sunnyside, and Flowing Wells. It was wrestling that brought me connections I still value today. Every roommate I’ve had since I left my home 8 years ago has been with a wrestling state champion. Greatness begets greatness. So many of us love to jest how much we hate wrestling when we are in it, but in reality, I can’t say thank you enough for what it has done for me.
Even helping Arizona-Wrestling.com during events has brought me new connections and places of interest. My former roommate and longtime friend from childhood developed the site and spent countless hours making it perfect. A mirror image of what we wish we had. There is hours upon hours of work involved in the site and I’m proud to say I was a part of Arizona-Wrestling.com from the beginning, even before it was called that. In honest truth when I wrestled we would have liked a site that was constantly maintained, updated, showcased achievements, and archives final matches, because mine are lost to time. However the passion of not having a wrestling site like this one and because I love the sport and everything it has done for me allowed me to be an active member in capturing video for the site to help inspire and motivate Arizona youth wrestlers. To set an example and appreciation of what we tried to build for them! This sport will motivate you; wrestlers from the past and present know this. Watching all the matches archived at Arizona-Wrestling.com just reinvigorates my desire to be involved with the sport of wrestling.
Along with everything expressed the sport of wrestling has given me the opportunities for growth, experience, ways of thinking and learning. Wrestling provided me inspiration, motivation, and a whole lot of self-esteem. I don’t let anything or anyone distract me from the moments that are worthwhile in my life. My coach told me “just believe in yourself. You got to believe son.” So wrestling has also given me a mentor, a role mode, and a father figure that I know now my father could never have been. I know this after many years of reflection. Wrestling does that to many young men, it produces mentors, role models, and heroes; it even brings us hope for a better day, but most of all wrestling makes you want to be the best, and is what makes wrestlers a cut above the rest.
Wrestling trains you for the rest of your life. It teaches you, intensity, focus, discipline, goal setting, determination, perseverance, how to improve, adapt and over come challenges. These are the characteristics that I would need to be successful on the mat, in school, and in the workplace. These were the seeds of greatness that were planted in me that was to prepare me for whatever life has to send my way!
With my new ventures residing with mixed martial arts I can only rise to the challenge that wrestling has put forth before me. If there is one thing to takeaway I’d want a wrestler to remember in this piece, remember this, if you hadn’t paid the price you would not be where you are today. So work hard, play hard, and wrestle!
– Michael Bux
Thank you Michael for the piece on wrestling.
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