Sunday, May 17, 2015
We talked about martial arts for years before we visited classes and found one Jed felt comfortable with. And came to love.
He's only been doing karate for awhile but he practices all the time. At home his training is strong and focussed. In the dojo he is often tired as training is in the evening. Not his best time. By the time it starts he has been up for 12 hours and often with broken sleep.
When his Sempai announced a tournament I encouraged him. It took a lot for him to enter. He was up at 4.45am the day of the tournament. It's been a hard time in our family lately and Jed, being of the more sensitive variety of folk, has been having a hard time too.
I felt so stink that I was teaching a Plant Medicine workshop on the other side of town on the day of the tournament and wouldn't be there for the whole thing to support him. But his dad took him. His bravery often amazes me.
He was the only kid who didn't win anything. The only kid in the whole dojo. I could see it in his face that he had noticed. It's not that he expected to win anything but being the only one who didn't? That face crumpled. After prizegiving he came and flopped into my lap and told me how he was feeling. Even an adult in his place would have felt the same. I reflected back what he shared with me. I explained that he had only entered one event so there were less chances, I talked about how proud I was of the progress he had made. (I couldn't even have imagined him in that class a year ago.) I talked of how we do things for our own satisfaction, our own love of learning and striving for our best. I spoke of how we can't let other people's judging decide our worth.
Within minutes he had moved through it and joined in the games. He had a lot of fun. He may not have won anything but he learnt something very important and I couldn't be prouder. Resilience, such a good quality to cultivate.
Update: I sat on it for awhile wondering whether to say anything. I ended up emailing Sampai. She was rushed on the day doing the judging on the day and hadn't realised until he was the only one not called out. She had tried to validate each of the kids. Jed, to his great credit, still loves karate and never brought it up again.