Rebirth of a Dragon
by David Kelso
(Glasgow , Scotland)
My journey began at age 12. I was a skinny kid, but massively inspired by Bruce Lee, and so began training in earnest in the martial arts and in physical fitness. I trained relentlessly. And by about age 15 I had become quite the budding superman. Teachers in school would ask my if I was on steroids as my levels of strength, athleticism and muscle were exceptional for my age. I was never a big guy, but I was densly muscular, like my inspiration. Continuing along my path led me to becoming a full time athlete and coach. I was training sometimes upto 8 hours a day. Fused with my other love of traveling, i studied and trained all over the world, in Europe, in Hong Kong In Australia. Martial arts and gymnastics had become my way of life, the were no longer just something i did to get fit or healthy, or to get a muscular body, they were my loves and passions. The had become to me a meditation. Through the martial arts I had began studying Buddhism very deeply and my whole practice of martial arts gymnastics and sports had become an expression for my spiritual practice, when I trained, 'I' disappeared there was only love and joy.
My practice got me through some of the toughest times of my life, My paternal Grandmothers death, my father affair and leaving, Numerous hard and difficult breakups. Training was the one thing I could always turn to in my moments of Crisis and pain, the one place where I could find calm and peace, where I could find my center.
Then at 25 I found my toughest challenge. I was training at a circus school in Australia, the place where I had always dreamed of living, doing what Id always dreamed of doing and training with all my heart and soul to follow my dream of performing for Cirque Du Soliel.
Then, Out of nowhere, the dream became a nightmare.
I was injured, badly, and for seeming unknown reasons. My shoulder gave out- which was a big deal as I was handbalancer! Annoyed but determined I worked around it where I could. But It was worsening and the time came where I could no longer train in thew circus school, which meant I had to go home to Scotland.
My dreams, lay in tatters.
I got home and began immediately working with physios and doctors trying to fix what was going wrong in my shoulder. And then as life does, things took a twist.
My knees started aching and becoming really painful, again for no apparent reason, initially thinking there was something medically wrong, I had all the tests under the sun, but everything came back fine.
My energy was shot to, I was listless and had chronic fatigue. Tying my shoe became an arduous task. Then to finally top things off, I had an abdominal muscle tear, which made every possible movement painful. I had gone from standing on 1 hand and doing endless handstand push ups to barely being able to walk the length of the street in a matter of a few weeks.
And the very thing I usually would turn to, the very practice that found me peace in times of Chaos, the very thing I loved, was the very thing I couldnt do.
Everything fell apart at once, It seems I had pushed my body far to much over the years, training 8 hours a day may have made me a superman, but at the cost of destroying my body, I was washed up at 25.
I spiraled into a deep depression for the next 6 months, seriously wishing Id just die. I lost about 10 kilos of muscle, and there seemed like there was nothing I could do about it, I had to watch all the muscle, all the strength all the athletic ability, everything I had worked all the years to build, I had to watch It all vanish.
I found I no longer knew who I was, training had been my everything, it was all I thought about, and all I wanted to do. Now I had no idea, who or what I was.
And thats the perfect place to begin.....
I moved more deeply in my spiritual practices and studies, and began to slowly heal my mind and my heart. I came to find my calm center again. Despite what was going on around about, I could be happy.
Now, at 27, I am happy, but I know full well the fire that is within me, the desire to express athletically is still very strong, my dreams havent died, this is just part of my journey, I had to learn some lessons, I had to learn the way I was training wasnt the best way, that it was causing harm.
Now I wish to try another way, I wish to return to the level of strength and fitness and athleticism I once had, without destroying my body, without having to work 8 hours a day to do it, and in the process heal my body completely of injury.
This is why i need project Dragon, because I believe this very well could be that way, the Dragon inside me hasnt died, It just needs a way, a method, to express itself, I need a way to do what I love again.
From what Ive read and seen, project Dragon looks like the perfect way, the perfect program to help a Dragon be reborn. Could it be life changing? For me the answer is a certain YES, not only life changing, but life giving.