Okay, I will concede the statement “Like the karate kid…” would be a little more accurate if any one of the Karate Kid movies, sequels and remakes featured a younger version of a married, thirty-something, out-of-work, out of shape, overweight, mostly uncoordinated, sometimes stressed, mother of two kids. I may not remember or be fully knowledgable on all the plot twists of all the movies of the franchise (they lost me somewhere in the middle of the Karate Kid, Part III), but I am pretty sure the previous statement is not how I would describe the characters played by Ralph Macchio, Hilary Swank or more recently, Jaden Smith.
However, here is the one thing that makes me like the Karate Kid – my path to black belt excellence is not quite the norm. 5280 Karate Academy in Lakewood, CO is going to sponsor my training and in return, I will blog about my son’s and my journey to black belt. I never anticipated I could negotiate services without some sort of lewd act involved. I guess you really do learn something new every day.
Karate came into our lives this past June when my son’s class went on a field trip to 5280 Karate Academy and he came home spouting off the seven magic words. This from a child who, often times, cannot remember what he ate for lunch that day. He also came home gushing about how much fun he had at karate and how he desperately wanted to start karate, and he wanted to start immediately. Having heard this demand before regarding other activities, which were then never mentioned again, I did not rush right out and sign him up. I figured it was another proverbial ‘flash in the pan.’ I was wrong. After many weeks of pestering, we took advantage of 5280 Karate Academy’s introductory deal and after our introductory sessions, we proudly watched our son achieve his white belt. Quickly, we were introduced to and inducted into the 5280 Karate Academy family.
After a few karate classes, I realized that I wanted to learn karate too. Which was a surprise to me because my most recent attempt at something that requires coordination was an epic failure. Come to find out, when you attempt a kickboxing class, do not focus on the moves and just try to keep up with the music, you look like a broken and out-of-control windmill. But this was different. As I watched my son, I became more and more curious if I could do that punch or kick, too. And if I could, wouldn’t it be a great way to get myself back in motion and (maybe!) healthy again?
A few days later, I came to the realization that learning karate was something I really wanted to, and for good reason. I was telling a friend about my son’s achievements in karate, and I mentioned that I was thinking about learning karate myself. He laughed and asked me, “Why would you want to do that? Who’s butt can’t you already kick?” I absolutely appreciated his question, and it made me realize the answer to his questions was, “My own.” For years I have known I was overweight and desperately needed to get back into a shape other than round. And for years, I have been making excuses as to why I couldn’t (too busy, too stressed, no money to spend on a gym membership, too tired to get up in the mornings). I knew this was the time and place to set a goal, work hard, achieve it, all the while creating an opportunity to keep a strong connection with my ‘daddy’s boy’ six-year-old son.
I went to Master Lewis (the owner of 5280 Karate Academy) and proposed this blog. If you are reading this, then he said yes! This blog will detail through narrative and pictures the journey of achieving our black belts at 5280 Karate Academy. I will approach my journey with dedication and self-discipline, however when you place a mostly uncoordinated person in a situation that requires coordination and flexibility, it is only logical hilarity will ensue. Also, I will be talking about my weight loss, parenting challenges, books relating to karate and how I apply them in my life, and the benefits of having a shared goal with my son. I hope you take the ride, and you get the opportunity to laugh and smile through it with us.
One last thing, every blog will end with a quality of a black belt. So here is the first quality: Indomitable Spirit. I will not allow myself to be beaten by my fear of failure (or falling on my butt). In all honesty, fear of falling on my butt probably ranks first. I am already dreading a running kick, but here I go anyway!