We started because it seemed like it would be a fun activity. And it was.
We continued because we realized we really enjoyed learning how to execute different kinds of punches and kicks. We continued because we liked learning how to put all the punches and kicks together in a form. We continued because we met amazing people who showed us that pushing ourselves farther than we thought we could would result in the ability to say, “I have a black belt.”
We continued through adversity, knock-downs, injuries, the message of the month (ugh), testing nerves, and epic fails. We continued even though we watched friends (sadly) drop away. We continued even when we were warned that most people quit during the brown belt sequence, because it gets considerably “less fun.” We continued because we could not imagine that it could ever get “less fun” when you were so close to the goal.
Well, here we are. In the brown belt sequence. So close to the goal.
Guess what? It’s decidedly, “less fun.”
Does that mean we are quitting? The answer is a resounding, “no.” Here is the reason: for us, tae kwon do has grown from a pastime that we enjoyed doing a few times a week, to a passion. A passion that we cannot imagine our lives without. A passion that will require serious bodily damage before the word, “quit” will enter our vernacular. And only because a doctor tells us we have to.
Okay, that sounds crazy. Let me say this… “Yes, it is crazy.” One hundred percent. Unfortunately, our pastime became our passion when we weren’t looking. And when a pastime becomes a passion, the “crazy” becomes “whatever it takes to reach our goal.”
What will it take for us to reach our goal? Attending at least two curriculum classes a week. And at least one sparring class. And one leadership class. Oh, and now that we are brown-red belts, we also are expected to help our instructors two classes a week. All, in addition, to the voluntary review class we have every Sunday morning for two hours.
That also doesn’t include the practice at home.
That also is the tip of the iceberg. In six months, we test to get into prep cycle. Prep cycle is the three months prior to earning your black belt, and it is all the things listed above in addition to meeting every Friday night and Saturday day. All day.
You are thinking we are crazy.
Crazy in love this damn sport.
So friends and loved ones, please be patient with us while we are “absent.” I promise we will be back… stronger, happier, and with our goal proudly displayed around our waists…
Today’s black belt characteristic I would like to display is perseverance because today, we got to watch so many students earn their next belts at the 5280 Karate Academy belt graduation. I saw students who got lost in a form, but keep on going, anyway. I saw students push themselves and do more push-ups than they have ever done before. I saw students support each other by cheering their fellow students on with, “You can do this.” And they did. It was a good day…
This isn’t a real
ly lucid post. It is a drug induced post.
Yes, I live in Colorado. No, I am not currently smoking pot. My drug of choice for the evening? NyQuil.
But it definitely wasn’t my first choice. (For my close friends out there, just for your information, pot wasn’t either. Smartasses.)
The reason for the meds? I have been hit with a bout of bronchitis. It has been at least nine years since my last bout – which happened to coincide with my departure from working the bar scene. I truly thought with the dry Colorado climate and my absence from the smoke-filled working environment, I would be exempt from the illness that would consistently hit me every year.
Last night, my old friend bronchitis showed up to inform me that I was wrong. Thanks.
So this morning, I woke up groggy, sick and exhausted realizing that I am in the midst of my son’s holiday break and I was still expected to keep two children from killing each other or destroying my house. Mama was going to need a little help.
I remembered back to my bartending days and immediately began searching for my old standby when it came to relieving the symptoms of bronchitis. The was ridiculously strong (so much so that one pill would eliminate my symptoms for 48 hours AND it would give me a rush better than ephedra ever could have), It had ridiculously scary side effects (a chance of stroke, in women? Nah, I am not scared… bring on the meds, Baby), the box was black and yellow (like damned Caution tape, seriously), and it helped me get through my shifts as a bartender where I would deal with people crying and/or screaming, throwing up, throwing beverages, and individuals being truly horrible human beings (you know, just like being a mom of two kids home during a school break). My old standby would be perfect to get me through the day.
I did a quick Google search and immediately found multiple results for my beloved Triaminicin. I clicked on the first link, and I was quickly alerted to the fact that my old, trusty, made-me-cracked-out-of-my-head, delusion inducing friend was….. DISCONTINUED!
I was bereft with grief. I had to take a moment to mourn my beautiful, dangerous, bad-influencing, old friend. A moment of silence was had. That is, until my kids started threatening to break each other’s favorite toys in fits of rage and maliciousness.
I had to deal with it all without falling into fits of laughter because my old friend Triaminicin was not there to make my heart race or throw me into hallucinatory fits when the purple crayon come to life and write on the walls, all by themselves.
Alright NyQuil, you have big shoes to fill. Give it your best shot…
Today’s black belt characteristic that I would like to discuss is indomitable spirit. I had a reason why, but I seriously cannot remember it. Ummmm, if you figure it out, let me know…