First Taekwondo grading, done! What an experience. I felt totally out of my comfort zone, but I moved with as much conviction as I could during the night. 110% effort and focus for every movement - I still felt clunky and my muscles still forgot where they were supposed to be half the time, but I’m hoping that purpose will have shown through all that.
I’m told it’s actually quite hard to fail this first grading so I’m not too concerned about passing. But I’m not in this thing to tick off the belts and walk away - I’m facing this damn surgery to deal with this stupid, stupid chronic illness, so I’m there to learn, train and fight with everything I have while I still can. Who knows how long I’ll be as physically capable and free as I am now, so every training session, every late-night practice after my kids are asleep, every grading session - I’ll be going through every one of them as if it’s my last.
It’s school holidays here now, so we have a two week break from training - there’s no way I can wait that long to hear how it went, so I’m off to drop the grading instructor an email. Fingers crossed!
All going well, I can’t wait to start learning my first full pattern - Chon-Ji Tul.
Last time I went through one of these I was 4 feet tall, had a pack of WWF cards in my back pocket, and spent my downtime playing an Atari.
Time is a funny thing.
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. – Lao-tzu
Three months into my Taekwondo training and I feel like I’m standing at the foot of a mountain. It’s equally daunting and exhilarating – I haven’t really gone anywhere yet, but I’m starting to understand just how much lies ahead. How much I have to discover, learn, practice and master. How much pain there’ll be, focus I’ll need, failures I’ll need to push past and victories I will celebrate.
My first grading is on Wednesday - from 10th gup (white belt) to 9th gup (yellow stripe). It’s a simple grading – some basic stances and offensive/defensive techniques, two fundamental exercises (four direction punch/four direction block, which I guess are a basic precursor to patterns), and a bit of theory. It would be easy to take this grading lightly but I want to avoid that trap – I’ve been practicing hard and want to nail it with the cleanest pass possible.
2 days and counting – can’t wait to test myself.