Wednesday, June 24, 2009

What's a nice girl like me doing in a place like this?

I never thought I would enjoy taekwondo sparring as much as I do.

Here I am: a 46 year-old mother of ten sparring with teenage boys who could really hurt me. But they're not.

They understand and try to follow the words we recite everyday before each class: "...I will practice in the spirit of Taekwondo; with courtesy for fellow students, loyalty for my instructors and respect for my juniors and seniors, Sir!"


I know they're holding back; practicing restraint when they spar this old mom (who's older than most of their moms). I know this because I watch them spar each other and say a prayer of thanksgiving each time I see how hard they can kick.

Why am I enjoying this so much? I ask myself this question after nearly every class. Maybe it's a release of stress and frustrations. Maybe it's the adrenaline that surges through my body each time I face an opponent who could really hurt me. Maybe it's the sheer joy of doing something strange that I never thought I'd do. Maybe it's the relief each time the class ends and I haven't gotten a major injury. It's probably all of the above.
Granted, it's a lot more fun since most of my family members are doing it too. Once my #4 daughter leaves for college in the fall, everyone living at home will be in taekwondo: all eight of us!

We credit our taekwondo instructors with helping our kids to learn better self-control, better discipline and study habits and certainly better physical conditioning. My #5 son has been involved with this studio for nearly 6 years and has recently achieved the rank of 2nd degree black belt decided. When he started he couldn't even do jumping jacks and he was a little squirt of ten years of age. He's now almost 16 and nearly as tall as the instructor. My, how time flies!


2 comments:

Anna said...

what great pictures and text... enjoy the moment!

Sharon said...

Great pics! My sons take Tae Kwon Do, and they're on their blue belt. I won a free trial in a contest at their studio, and I went to two classes with my oldest son. It was so much fun, and I would LOVE to take classes regularly. It would be a big commitment: at least 2 evenings a week and/or Saturday mornings; if I teach CCD this fall that's another evening. I'm considering it, though!