On December 23, two days before Christmas, the Joshi world will see Act Yasukawa for the final time. She will team up with Kairi Hojo & Haruka Kato when she faces her fellow Odeo Tai members Kyoko Kimura, Holidead & Kris Wolf at Act’s request. To me this is a sudden chill to the bone regarding her retirement, but in the end, I’m sure it’ll work out in the end.
“Well, at first I was sad…but there’s really no helping that I lost my eyesight. I intend to move forward with my life, rather than grieve over my past. I want to have a fun future,” she said in an interview with STARDOM’s English Facebook page. It’s really funny to me what those last two sentences really mean to me nowadays because the recent anger issues I have and how it escalated to a point where I cannot take it any longer. But what Act was saying about moving forward with life and having a better future, I believe that is possible for anybody who have issues with themselves they want to control or find ways to get that specific problem solved.
Odeo Tai, which includes SHIMMER star Nikki Storm, Starfire, Thunder Rosa, Hudson Envy, Kyoko Kimura, Kris Wolf and Holidead; are one of the most popular groups in Joshi wrestling for all the reasons I can’t explain, and this match will prove why this unit will continue to thrive, even without Act. “When I first told the other members of Oedo Tai about my retirement, we all shed tears,” she says. “Oedo Tai is about friendship. They are important friends to me.
“I want my final match to be with Oedo Tai, simply because they are my important friends. To be able to have my last match with my friends, makes me a lucky person.”
Act’s retirement was something we never saw coming, but it was for months. During the summer of 2014, Yasukawa was hospitalized due to her constant battle with Graves Disease, a disease that affects the thyroid. While she was recovering, she also had successful surgery to repair the vision in her right eye, which had been visually impaired most of her life due to her ongoing fight with the disease. Following her February 22, 2015 match at Korakuen Hall against Yoshiko, she was hospitalized once again for nearly one month with a fractured orbital socket and nasal cavity. This caused the promotion to suspend Yoshiko indefinitely (She works later retire however) and make changes internally. Act went through several surgeries, rehabilitation and training to make her comeback, because her love for professional wrestling was just too strong to walk away. However, the vision in the same eye that was repaired, had been severely damaged due to what many people called an unforgivable act from Yoshiko. With only weeks before her return to the ring, her doctors let her know that she cannot continue as a professional wrestler, and that her vision will never return to normal. It’s sad, but at the end of the day, things will work out for the best.
“Many wrestlers get injured during their career. But I’m a lucky person in that I will have my retirement, and say hello one more time to the fans that have supported me,”Act says. “To say, `thank you´, and to be able to leave the ring with my head held high as a professional wrestler. Thank you.”
As Act says goodbye to her wrestling career, she has plenty to say about turning a negative situation into something positive, something we all must learn. “For about four years, I have been a happy person as a professional wrestler having the support of so many fans. I learned so much along the way, to keep going and to never give up. To turn anything negative into a positive. That is where my motto comes from, `I change the minus to the plus.´ But I didn’t do it all alone. I always had a lot of support.”
And that support will never go away, even for Act Yasukawa.
When it comes to turning a negative into a positive, people will understand why she refused to listen to her detractors and went her own way. She has become more than just a Joshi favorite, she became the happiest woman on earth. And that is something we all can learn from, people like Act Yasukawa.
Domo arigato, Act. Thank you for putting your heart and soul in your profession, and thank you for giving people positive advice.
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