I tested on June 23rd and I felt really good about it. Unlike my previous tests, I had a mental block that kept me from focusing. I took breaks. I got injured. But I am lucky enough I had some great people still rooting for me and they never gave up on me. Pushed me to try harder, held me accountable for coming to practice. Gave me words of encouragement every day. Hugged me when I cried. Check on me when I wouldn’t come to class. But more importantly they believed in me and trust that I didn’t lose my light. That drive and that fire that some people have inside that makes their energy contagious and inspiring. They knew I was merely just having a hard time and not because I had given up hope.
This might sound like an unnecessary sappy speech because I’m not training for the Olympics or anything, nor am I any near as good as most people. Taekwondo for me is more than a hobby. There was a point in my life where I would spend 15+ hours there per week. I’m not so fierce anymore, hehe. We were social outside of the dojang. We are in constant contact. I have since become an officer in the club so I’m fairly involved with the way things are running. This is my family. Pushing yourself through physical performance and trying to improve (mentally or physically) in anything, certainly takes a toll on your soul. But it’s a great feeling knowing you’re being supported. (Thank you Master Dan, Master Harb, Ana, Joy and Krol! ).
Before my test, I had my first tournament of the year. Boston International, which if you remember from last year is when I broke my hand …and still took gold. This year, I had a different competitor. A much larger one than I’ve ever had to fight before. She was taller and kicked like she was trying to demo a building. She was a fierce competitor. At this point, I had not gotten through my mental block yet. My coach could already tell I wasn’t ready to fight yet. But I was there and I was going to. With the exception of my first fight, I’ve yet to lose. I’m in red (sorry for the blurriness). Special thanks to Amanda for the photos and the video footage!!
I wound up getting kicked in the shin (even with shin guards) so hard that it stunned me to the point where I didn’t know what I was doing anymore. It was a super close match. 4-4 in round 3, and then she got one more kick in to make it 4-5. I took Silver. In addition to losing my match, I also placed 3rd in Poomsae. I feel I was judged unfairly and there were multiple people who agreed I should have placed 1st. But that is part of the beast. Sometimes judges just aren’t in your favor. My coaches were proud of me and that all I really cared about. Well, after I wiped the sour puss off my face.
The following week was my red belt test and I felt really good going into it. I put in the hours, the time, the blood, sweat and tears.
And finally, the first video ever on my blog. Here is my reverse turning kick board break.
A few weeks after the test, was the Kickathon . Something I was very much involved in. Again, thank you everyone who donated it was a very hot day but we did it and we raised a decent amount, half of which went to the Friends of the Floating Hospital! I did in fact, have my red belt in this photo.