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I watched her overcome adversity in the form of a badly sprained ankle and power through on grit and determination when her body wanted to fail her.I watched her learn firsthand the importance of a positive attitude on physical performance.Of course, at each rank exam, Sensei Jon gave him corrections and asked for updates and improvements when necessary.
Words won’t express how proud I am of her; but that’s not even the point.
After all, she has a long way to go still, and any kudos would be premature.
But in the grand scheme of life, those things are minor.
What matters more is the confidence, the poise, and the experience she builds every time she steps on the mat.
Most importantly, I watched her display a passion for something that was uniquely hers.
She is passionate about Karate not because we taught it to her, nor because she wants to make us happy, nor because she feels like it is expected; she is passionate for herself and herself alone.
Pride is not what moves me to write this; rather, I wonder if any of this would have existed if we had gone to another studio with less stringent requirements.
Sure, her roundhouse kick may have been as good, and she may have already been wearing a black belt for a year or two.
Where a black belt exam was held on the third Thursday of every month, and was two hours after school.
Where a student’s only requirement was to physically show up and go through the motions. My reasoning was that a black belt would be such a confidence booster for my child, and such an achievement to brag about, that I did not want to take the chance of her not getting one by quitting once the training got too rigorous.