So yesterday we went to Taekwondo. Before class I was talking with Mrs. F who is my age, literally 2 days younger, and she was letting me know that black belts now had to break as part of their belt stripe testing. Hmmm this is news I have not broken in almost 2 years, nope not kidding. I ask what we have to do and I am told roundhouse kick and spin back kick. Hmm ok I know my spin back kick will get through the board which is I might add 1″ thick pine, but my roundhouse….well….I broke a bone in my foot a long time ago doing a roundhouse kick so I am not a bit shy about doing that with the remaining never been broken foot. My BFF and Mrs. F see the hesitation in my face and reassure me I am fine. They tell me over and over I am strong enough. Sigh I want to believe them but cannot.
I buy two boards because if I have to I have to. I buy M1 and M2 boards as well so they can practice (their boards are 1/2″ pine). N states she can break because she is a yellow belt now and I laugh and say “Ummm no not until you learn self control.” M2 says “told you” and I shoot her a dirty look. We go through class and I try not to focus, it won’t help and I don’t want to psyche myself out of it beforehand. It turns out we spend 10 minutes sparring so by the end I am wiped and when she said “Grab your boards” yeah I won’t lie I wanted to fake an injury.
I grabbed my boards and sat down to wait, kids always go first as do under belts. My kids did great. They each did a jump front snap kick through one board and a palm strike through the other board. I laughed and clapped loudly for them and of course shouted support. Other kids went, and I did much the same. Ok maybe a bit less enthusiastically because hey they were not my kids. Finally I hear my name called and with dread I approach the instructors.
The older of the two asks me what I am going to do and I clarify that for testing it is roundhouse and spin back kick. She affirms that it is, so I say I will attempt those kicks. Honestly I felt like I was going to throw up. When I measured for my roundhouse I flashed back to when my bone broke and I choked back a gasp. I had to stay focused or it would happen again. I measured for the spin back kick and had to tell the holder, “So you know I cannot turn my head. I will measure and you tell me if my foot is right so I can duplicate it. I can’t actually turn my head.” At that point I think the holder wanted to throw up as it meant I was literally doing a kick WITHOUT looking at the target first. Hmmm can’t end well.
If you wonder what it looks like, thanks to this site http://www.martialyou.com/ you can see a step by step guide but I have to tell you he looks better than I do…
See piece of cake right??? OK so I set up swallow hard and as per the instructions, yell before I kick so the holders can close their eyes so they don’t flinch. I yell and swing my foot around and I hear a crack and pray like heck it is the board. I land and send my foot flying backwards and feel it graze the board. Darn it I missed. I regain my composure quick and set up and throw another back kick. I hear the crack and know I am through, phew thank goodness. I land and go back to fighting stance and see that the boards did in fact break. I sighed a huge sigh of relief as my throbbing foot turned out to merely be a smacked blood vessel (happens often as my foot veins are very superficial).
The kids start yelling “Go Mom good job!!!” I went to take the board pieces from the instructors and the younger sister said to me “OK you made that look too easy.” I laughed because I assume it is just a supportive statement without real value. I go and sit down and the new student to our school said “OK seriously did you even feel it, you made it look like it was butter?” I laughed and assured him I did in fact feel it. M1 is grabbing my foot to look at it and while it was red, it was perfectly fine.
Class is over and the instructors ask if I would ever consider breaking in a competition. I laugh and say no I was not that good and they both disagreed. We had a brief discussion of what it would take to win at my level. It would be hard for sure but I am not thinking it would be impossible. The younger sister laughed and said “Well you know you have to come to class all the time” I laugh and ask why as she had a bunch of students and surely someone such as myself does not really matter.
The older sister looked down and said “Well its just that we know you are here and we like it because……” The younger sister spoke up “We like you because you are loud and we like that you are loud.” Her sister swatted at her and scolded her that she ought not talk to people like that. I grinned and assured them both that I was aware I was loud but in my defense, they ask for people to be loud and supportive of each other. They both smiled and said “Well yay but no one but you does that”
All right so that is my purpose in class, to be the loudest cheerleader….hmm I think I can do that!!!