Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Moments of inspiration

I'd spent the day finishing freelance writing projects (including a 30 minute drive to a photo shoot), sorting through administrative stuff at the college, and trying my courses set so students can function when I go to Cleveland. I got back home just in time to head out again to go to Robbie's school conference.

I considered skipping TKD. I'd be late anyway.

But I remember James was going to be there to sign my board . . . so I went.

Everyone has days when they just don't feel like working out. This was definitely one. Plus, I've just been feeling emotionally wrung out recently. It was hard to get into anything at class. Even sparring.

At the end of sparring time, we had the chance to "find someone you want to spar with." I just stood there.

"Jane, do you want to spar?"

Ms. Pryor was standing there.

"Oh. OK!"

Sparring with Ms. Pryor is about my favorite thing. I'm challenged to hold my own while I learn a few things by observation and experience (getting hit!) I want to learn from her "finesse" style of sparring--she uses speed, flexibility, and intuition/psychology to win.

After sparring, she gave me some pointers and showed me a few things I could do to make my sparring better:
1. pick up the pace of my kicks. I can be fast, but I need to work on throwing kicks in quicker succession
2. try new combinations of kicks, and/or learn how to tell which combinations, old or new, will work best in any given situation. (Tall order, but fun.)

She challenged me to work on that so that I can show improvement at the black belt test.

For those moments, I felt my enthusiasm for TKD flood back, despite exhaustion (physical and emotional). "That cheered me up," I told her.

Of course, after class, I was--once more--exhausted. And the top of my foot hurt where I'd roundhouse kicked a pad wrong.

"Maybe I should stop doing Tae Kwon Do," I muttered as I went in to tuck Eli in to bed. I must say that there have been times, especially this week, when I've considered postponing all this testing--as Kicker Chick also suggested in her comment to my last post.

"Maybe, but you should get your black belt first, Mom," said Eli. "You've worked so hard."

That comment, from Eli cheered me up, too. Sometimes, I'm not sure I have the support of my family in this martial arts venture (except for grudging acceptance of all the many hours I've been gone at class over the past months). But maybe they're more proud of me than I realize.

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