Tuesday, April 28, 2009

My children are my life. Sometimes life is good, sometimes life sucks butt. At the end of the day they always manage to make me smile, and laugh hysterically. They are my greatest source of aggravation and my greatest source of pride.

For example, this is what my lovely daughter did to herself last week.

She was VERY impressed with her new do. I believe her exact words were...

Mommy, my hair looks so cool.

I reflect back on the blogs that I follow and realize my trials and tribulations are not very different from most. I thought, "At least she's a girl. When Carly's kid did this there was no covering it up."

Isn't it AMAZING what a good comb over can do??

The other day we went to black belt training for John. The Do Jang is in the middle of this huge park, so we play while John is in class. There are usually runners that make their way through the park. This particular day we were playing when this shirtless man runs by, with this super hot chick. Well, he impressed the wrong chick.

Right as he passed, not two feet from Madison, she starts to giggle madly and yells at the top of her lungs, " MOMMY!! That man is nekkid!!"

No Madi, he's not nekkid.

Yes him is mommy! His belly is nekkid...his chest is nekkid...his legs is nekkid...

All the while bobbing her little head from side to side with her hand on her hip.

Yes Madi, but that's only half nekkid.

Which made her giggle even more.

I have a feeling that I'll be spending A LOT of time at school, when she starts pre-K next year.

The big one, on the other hand, is growing up way too fast. Soon to be thirteen, and freaking mama out a little bit.

I actually think I saw a little bit of peach fuzz on his upper lip the other day. Lawd help me!

I can't help but look at him and then look at Madison and be a little sad. It all goes by so quickly. Seems like just yesterday that I was putting HIM on the bus to pre-K.

What the heck am I going to do when they are all grown, out of the house, and not around to fill my every waking moment?

I would now like to share a list that I've started. I started this list so that I can find myself outside of my mommy identity, so I won't need a little rubber room once they're grown... I've seemed to wrap myself up in it, like a comfortable blankie.

Once I quit my job and became a SAHM I felt like I had such clarity. I had a handle on things. I'm beginning to realize that if we're not careful we can become a little lost. It's because nothing is set in stone. We're ever changing, kind of like our children.

So here it goes...

Accomplishments for the week that DO NOT include my spawn...

1-I've completed four of my five running program work-outs.
2-I've successfully journaled all of my food for a total of thirteen days now...even on the days I screwed up.
3-I learned Taegeuk Sa Chang in only two classes.
4-I took my first kick to the face in free sparring and didn't cry!

Thursday, April 23, 2009

What a week!

First of all, I'm trying to get back into running. I KNOW! Again?? Hopefully this time it will stick. A bunch of people that I know from the Weight Watchers board are doing a challenge associated with Weight Watchers called the, "Momentum Walk-it Challenge."At the end of the challenge you sign up for a 5-K.

You have two options. You get a walking schedule OR a, "learning to run," schedule. It's really easy intervals and even at the end you still walk/run the 5-K, but I figured it would be a good starting point.

Even though I kind of gave up on running when I started doing Tae Kwan Do, I still secretly dream of being a runner. I don't know what it is, because I hate it when I'm doing it. I DREAD doing it, up until I'm in the middle of my intervals. Then I fall in love with it. The feeling of pride and knowing that I've accomplished something that is REALLY hard for me, is the best feeling in the world.

I went into this without intentions of doing a 5-K at the end. Just using it as a tool to jump start my weight lose and get some desperately needed cardio training for Tae Kwan Do. Now I'm seriously toying around with the idea of doing a race, even if I have to walk/run it.

I suppose I'm just way too hard on myself. If I can't do it perfectly then I get all bent out of shape. One of the black belts in my class, Mr. Mike, gave me some valuable Tae Kwan Do advice, that applies to more than just TKD.

He said that as long as I was putting forth my all, it's all that matters. It's not necessary to be an Olympic caliber athlete to get to black belt. All it takes is heart, dedication and a willingness to push the envelope.

I may never be able to do a perfect jump back kick, or some of this other fancy foot work, and leaps in the air that some of these guys do. I shouldn't let that keep me from trying. If even after I put all of my heart and soul into it, I can't do it, then it's ok. I'm going to struggle with some things and others will come naturally to me. We are all individuals and I can't compare myself to anyone else. Just keep at it, it's all worth it in the end.

Those were very wise words, and after I pondered it a bit I realized I had heard that same speech from several of my running friends before, and it made me smile.

So here I am, my first week under my belt and I'm feeling good about it. I've arranged my schedule so that I'm not running on Tae Kwan Do days, and it's working well so far.

Legs are feeling good, the, but that's from kicking the crap out of people, not running. Trust me, the random knee or elbow is nothing nice. I think I've permanently damaged the joint on my left big toe, due to all the lifted knees I've caught with a front snap kick. I've had a bruise there for at least a couple of months, and when I first step on it in the morning, it makes this God awful cracking sound.

My feet are starting to look all nasty and beat up, like everyone else in class. I'm loving it! It's something that a pedi is never going to fix. Besides I don't think they book entire afternoons for appointments. I NEED those calluses on the bottoms of my feet and I'd have to jack up anyone who tried to scrap them off.

I'm super excited that I'm learning my new form, Taegeuk Sa Chang or Taegeuk 4. We got all the way up to step 12 on Monday and hopefully we will learn the rest tonight. All the forms that I've learned to date were all rather similar, this one is TOTALLY different.

I so appreciate the beauty that comes along with this Martial Art. At first glance all you see is allot of raw aggression and brute strength, but it also holds a beauty and precision in every move, that fascinates me and makes me appreciate it all the more. I watch in wonder, and like a child I say to myself,"I want to be just like them."

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Green Belt....

You know, I always complain that I have nothing interesting to blog about. The truth of the matter is that I have nothing that I've not censored out of my life, that's interesting to blog about.

Once you cut out everything that's embarrassing, hurtful and humiliating there's not much left to talk about but my kids, my husband and my dog.

I'm so busy hiding from my disappointments that I'm going from one thing to the next EXPECTING hurt, humiliation and embarrassment. Instead of overcoming it, I'm consumed and controlled by it. It taints every aspect of my life, so that in my mind even the good, isn't quiet good enough.

I'm thinking that realizing this is half the battle, so here it goes.


I was already freaked out going into the belt test. So much so that I kept confusing two forms that I had to know for my LAST belt test. Come on! Give me a bUreak!

I was practicing with one of my training partners before the test and I was forgetting the simplest of things. What direction I was supposed to be facing, doing a block for Taegeuk Il Chang that was supposed to be in Taegeuk Yi Chang. I was blowed up before it even all started.

My palms were sweating, my feet felt sticky against the floor. I felt like I couldn't focus.

I calmed down a bit when the warm-up started because I didn't have to think, just do. Jumping-jacks, push-ups, sit-ups, stretching, all mindless activities. I was feeling a little more confident when we started the kicking and blocking combinations, but then they threw a few kicks in there that I had never done before. Like a jump-side. Not too bad, because it's not that different from a jump-round.

When he said jump-BACK, I think all the blood drained from my body. This is the kick that I have feared from day one, even more than spinning-hook. Took me MONTHS to get that one right, but I didn't have months. I had to do it now, on the spot, having never even TRIED it before. Fuck me....

Have you ever seen a 205 pound woman, try to do a jump-back kick?? Well neither have I. I refused to allow my husband to go to my test much less get video of it, but I'm sure it was a sight to behold.

Now I KNOW that they didn't expect any of us to be able to do it correctly, because it's an advanced kick and we're still intermediate. Still didn't matter to me in my OCD mind. Everything has to be perfect, ya know?? All wrapped up in a pretty little box to put up on the shelf of accomplishments.

We move along to the forms. We had to sit while the lower belts did theirs. Allowing muscles to get cold, limbs go to sleep, and WAY too much time to think.

I'm kind of in a daze when we get up to do our forms. Only half way paying attention because I'm too busy dwelling on what I've messed up, and all I hear is one.

You see, our instructor usually calls Taegeuk Il Chang, by it's full Korean name, but it can also be called Taegeuk 1. Yup you know it, I started doing Basic Form One and didn't realize it until four moves in. Fuck me twice....

I was a big hot mess after that. I managed to find my place in the form that I was actually SUPPOSED to be doing and completed it. I was like a deer in head lights for the remainder of the test. Going through the motions and praying for it to be over quickly. Which of course didn't happen and no matter how much I prayed the floor would NOT, open up and swallow me whole. Damn it.

Even with all of that, I managed to pass. Thank the sweet, blue eyed baby Jesus that most of the testing instructors observing have been in my class, and KNEW that I could do better.

The icing on the cake??

We get to the belt ceremony and guess what. They don't have a belt that fit me....

Please God, Please God...Nope, no hole.

Bless Mr. Matt's heart. He did his best to spare me the humiliation by tying me in and MAKING it fit. By the time it was over I had lost circulation to my lower extremities, and I couldn't get the belt I had so coveted, off fast enough. *sigh*

Three, but am I counting myself out?? Hell no.


I've pondered this for the last week or so, along with all the other crappy things that I'm dealing with at the moment. I think we need the suck ass things that go on in our lives, just as much as the good.

It brings clarity, and rather than humiliation, humility. No matter how good you do, no matter how hard you try, it may not be enough, and that's O.K.

As long as you do your best and THE best for yourself, it's all that matters.

Life isn't perfect. Sometimes that box you put up on the shelf is a little beat up, but who cares. It's a moment in time that you can never get back, so appreciate it for what it is and move on with no regrets.

One day, I'll look back at this point in my life and see it as the growing experience that it is, because I'm going to take this and let if feed me instead of allowing it tear me apart. To find the positive in negative experiences, not only in Tae Kwan Do, but in life in general.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Spring Is In The Air....

I just thought I would share some images of my second love....gardening. I decided to try my hand at vegetables and herbs this year and so far so good.

My first tomato.....

My mother bird has found her nest again. This same bird has been here for three springs now

I love spring : )

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Testing Time Again

It's right around the corner....Green Belt.

Things are so different now than when I first started TKD. I have discovered a competitive beast that lives somewhere deep inside. I wish I could channel this person more often. She only seems to come out during tournament and testing time.

A couple of weeks ago I competed in my second ever tournament. In the weeks leading up to it, I was very nervous. I felt so unprepared. Though I had good intentions I didn't train nearly as much I would have wanted to, but I'm just doing this for fun right??

I really surprised myself. Despite my lack of extra effort leading up to the tournament, I did REALLY well. I received first place in forms and third in sparring. The sparring was sooooo close. I fought someone who was two ranks above me. I was surprised by how unafraid I was. Had my conditioning been a little better, I could have taken her.

I looked across the ring at this person that I KNEW was more advanced and better skilled than myself, and I had absolutely no fear. The only thing going through my mind was the need to win. Even though I didn't, I proved so much to myself.

I DO have the drive, I DO have the confidence, I DO have the ability. Thirty seconds can mean EVERYTHING. It takes months to be ready for the last 30 seconds.

Watching J at black belt training makes me want more for myself. I know I can do this. It will take tons of hard work and dedication. Much more than the two days a week that's devoted to it now, but I have it in me.

First order of business is to lose some more weight and become better conditioned.

This week's goal....30 minutes of cardio every day.