Sergio Non: You just referred to the anxiety that's been hanging over you for the last couple of years. You've spoken in previous interviews about that. How do you deal with those panic attacks these days?
Karo Parisyan: I have a doctor who's talking to the UFC, for me to talk my medication at night time sometimes that I need. Non-narcotic, obviously. It can be an Ativan or a Xanax so whatever it is, just be able to go to sleep so I can continue on with my night and my day.
I didn't know what it was when I was diagnosed with it. I thought I was a chick, no offense to girls. I thought I was acting like a girl. "Oh, I'm having a panic attack, my heart's blah blah blah." I just didn't even want to say it to people.
But when it hit me before the fight and I thought I was going to almost die, I wanted to put a bullet in my brain.
Your brain is basically on a sprint run. You cannot sit down and just kind of calm yourself down. It's impossible.
That's when I said, "You know what? I have something wrong with me, and I'll never walk out to fight again if I feel like this." Before the Thiago Alves fight, you know? Even before the Dong Hyun Kim fight, I walked out, on pain medication, drooling, anxiety, my heart going through the roof.
But I cannot let it control me and control my life. People have lost everything because of anxiety and panic attacks. I kind of lost almost everything too, but I still have a good job, so I just have to come back and redeem myself and show everybody that I can fight. I can beat this and I can beat anybody that's standing in front of me.
People have killed themselves having half of the s--- that I went through. I'm not being cocky. I'm not being an a------. I'm being honest here.
In the past two years I've been through stuff. I've been through hell and I've been back.
SN: In the past you've worked with some big-name camps, like Randy Couture's gym. Have you ever thought about joining one of the prominent gyms on a long-term basis?
KP: Yeah, but they (Xtreme Couture) are in Vegas. I can't move to Vegas. I don't want to move to Vegas. I live in Northridge, Calif. with my family.
I wish they here. I swear to God I wish they were here. If they were in L.A., I swear to God I will be champion within eight months, just because I can go to training every night and have great guys to push me.
Even for this fight, I wanted to go and train with them, but financially, I wasn't ready financially to go on a trip, and go and train. It was kind of hard. I was down to that point.
So I put my camp together here with my friends that help me. As long as I'm in good shape, I've got strength and conditioning coming up really good right now.
As long as I'm mentally fit, clean and mentally focused, and conditioned so my heart's beating good, I'm ready to go.
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Karo "The Heat" Parisyan vs. Dennis "Superman" Hallman
10 p.m. ET, pay-per-view
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