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Doctor's Orders--Really!

Posted Aug 26 2008 11:39pm
My husband had already reached this conclusion, but his doctor told him recently that, for his own well being, he should return to a martial arts school. He hasn't been a student since before we met (10 years ago this December!), though he has been a teacher of individual students and has investigated a few schools. He does some workouts on his own and picks around with friends, but he admits he's gotten lazy with the serene and comfortable life we have together. He still lives by Bushido, though, and the important lessons he learned from one sensei and another have stayed with him, permeating his view on life. When we bought our house, for example, one of his requirements was a room he could use as a dojo; most recently, though, it was the kittens' quarantine space when we brought them inside.

So we've been researching schools in the area for one that would interest him and would have something to teach him. The more obscure arts he sought, like iaido and kendo, eluded us locally, though we initially found an old website for an iaido school about 30 miles away that has since disappeared. Tonight we visited an aikido school about 5 minutes from home; I think we found a winner for him.

The school has only a half dozen students, three of whom were there tonight: a father and his 12-ish year old son and a high school wrestler. The wrestler was suprisingly timid with certain techniques, but the sensei was patient with him. The younger boy clearly didn't want to do the stretches or listen to instruction, but he's apparently a natural; when given the opportunity at the end of the night to practice any technique he learned, he did them well, without thinking. His father bugged me at first, because he left the mat to answer his cell phone. The second time I realized he was taking a call about someone with a fever, and I understood he was a doctor who was probably on call. I withdrew my objection (though I later realized he resembled someone I had a crush on when I still lived up North).

James is planning to attend Tuesday's class. He didn't recognize every technique the sensei used, couldn't criticize his teaching method, and while researching was impressed with his credentials. These days he is less interested in the color of his belt than he is in learning. I want him to do something he's always enjoyed, even though I doubt I can share the experience.
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