A little over four years ago we brought our older son to a karate school for a trial class. We didn’t know if he’d like it but figured it wouldn’t hurt to try it out. Little did we know that four years later we would be sitting on the same black mat, but this time we would be watching him get his black belt in Kenpo.
I can’t describe how proud I am of him. At first I thought that the karate classes were just “an extracurricular activity” for him, and that there was a possibility that he would decide to go a different route with another sport. Not the case here. He stuck to it…these last few months were hardcore for him too!
Not only did he religiously go to two classes per week and a sparring class, along with school, basketball practices and games, he trained – running a mile, sit ups, push ups, squats, jumping jacks, sprawls. We’d be sitting down to dinner and N would jump off his chair and break into push ups.
The night before his four hour black belt test he went to bed early, super nervous for what the next day would bring. Up early in the morning, he crawled into bed with me and just wanted to cuddle. My little man. I watched him grab his sparring gear bag out of the garage and get into the car with his dad…the day had finally come.
8 am came and he was on his game…I was home with G as we didn’t want N to be distracted in any way (and G has a knack for distracting his big bro). I was getting play-by-play pictures texted to me as each of the tests were administered. N ran the mile in 7 minutes 16 seconds – a whole minute before anyone else finished! Next came the push ups, sit ups, squats, sprawls, and jumping jacks.
After a 30 minute break, he was in the spotlight again. Now he needed to show off his knowledge of positions and technique.
The final portion of the test was sparring – both full gear and without (grappling). His last fight was crazy…he is not one to be aggressive, but if there is something in the way of getting his black belt, he is no joke. Fighting by the rules, he gave it his all – to the point of the opponent vomiting…whoops!
As he received his certificate of completion, a gorgeous samauri sword (which will be encased in a lucite box, locked and hung on the wall in his room), and embroidered black belt I couldn’t help but get a bit chocked up. My little man is growing up, pushing himself to all limits, and becoming this amazing person right before my eyes.