What I know about karate is directly from Mr. Miyagi’s sage advice in The Karate Kid! Wax on, wax off. One thing I do know is that I’m fascinated with people who study martial arts. The discipline, strength, and work ethic it takes to advance belts is extraordinary. What little kid didn’t want to be Daniel LaRusso? Didn’t all 80s kids try to master the Crane Kick?
I used to work with a woman who has two young daughters and both girls take karate. These girls are fierce and strong. Her eldest daughter is currently testing for her black belt and my friend would post these videos on Facebook and I would be amazed. How can a child barely in middle school do all of that? It’s just stunning to see.
After years of taking her children to classes and competitions, my friend decided to take adult classes this year. Thinking back to my 80s fascination and all of the discipline and strength I could gain I wanted to join too. Then, of course, life happens, then the holidays, and then, then, then. You understand. I never got there. But I always wanted to.
Cue the introspection. Thinking of all the things I always wanted but always let my weight stop me. When I lose (insert desired weight here) and then I’ll (insert desired action). Never lose the weight therefore, never take action.
Then this week another one of my friends posted that it’s Buddy Week at her dojo so she can bring a friend to check out the class for free. She’s another Bariatric Surgery Sister and I just love reading her posts about what taking karate has done for her and her family. I just started a new job literally a plaza away and my work schedule coincided beautifully with the adult karate lessons. The only thing missing was a flashing, neon sign in front of my face or a hand written letter directly from God. It is time.
The next morning I walked into the dojo and immediately had an internal attack! Karate is done BAREFOOT and I’m in full on Winter Feet Mode (women understand this, entirely). I had to just shake it off, get in there and do it.
And I did it! I discovered that my fitness level is pretty strong. I also learned that the dance classes of my youth and the yoga classes as an adult only help with karate. Another great lesson was to turn my wedding ring around when doing partner punching drills. I truly wish I learned it before my left hook connected with my partner’s chin! He was a good sport. I also learned the the only person who cared about my pedicure-less feet was me.
By participating in Buddy Week I also received a free month of classes. I’m looking forward to seeing where this journey takes me. I’m learning to embrace taking risks, not waiting for ideal circumstances or weights before I take action, and just trying new things!
Thank you Michelle for the Buddy Week invitation and being such an awesome inspiration and thank you Elaine, Elaina, and Gabby for making me look at karate as something possible.