Saturday, January 21, 2006

While today was the first Tiny Tiger class that I took with Drew, it was generally uneventful. He behaved himself pretty well, and got two paper stars, which was good. At one point, me and a dad of another kid, who both of us take regular classes too, had to break off and we sparred, broke boards, and did a little practice with our weapons. I'd never sparred a guy before, and he's a blue belt (several ranks above me at this point), so I just told him to go easy on me as I'm not that good. After we were done, he told me that I was actually pretty good at it. I don't know if he was being kind, or meant it. I took it for the latter. I think I feel more comfortable sparring guys because unless it's a teenage girl, most of the women don't really go for it too much, whereas the guys will. I guess that's what happens when you have a rough-and-tumble boy in the house. I was doing a little better with my side kick for the board break. That's becoming a little easier as time goes on. I think I'm starting to get the rhythm of that. Ben Phillips (a 15 yr old instructor in training who just got his 3rd degree black belt-- nice kid) helped me learn the proper way of switching that numchuck thingy from one hand to the other, which is good.

I did run into a little trouble with Ma'am, and although I understand her position, I still think it sucks. Drew was disappointed as I got my graduation paper, and he got nothing. Somehow I remembered with the Cubs the kids participating but not getting a belt, so I thought something similar would apply to the Tiny Tigers his age. I know he's not eligible for a belt until the following round of graduation, but I thought that this way, he wouldn't be left out, so I asked if Drew could participate and if needed, I could make him a little certificate. Ma'am was very adamant on a "no" on that, because if she let Drew that, she'd have to do that for all the kids. OK, well, I understand that. But man, how to deal with a sad little 4 year old? I hate that, because he does work hard, and I think it's a slightly stupid idea that just because he only comes to class once a week vs. twice a week he has to be left out. He's only 4, for heavens' sake, why would he come twice a week at this age? Anyhow, I scrambled my brain for an answer, and I realized that he could get something-- at least a red star patch minimally-- for participating in the next interschool tournament. And I told him we could have our own graduation at home too. That seemed to make him feel better. I felt so bad for him, but we both knew that he wouldn't get a belt this time around. If he doesn't get a belt at the following graduation, I will be quite angry, to say the least. Even Drew told me in the car after we left and I was encouraging him after his disappointment, "But Mom, I'm a good boy!". My heart broke. I had to tell him that Ma'am didn't think he was bad, but that he wasn't ready yet. He needed more practice, and that he was already doing a good job. That seemed to make him feel better.

I dunno. There are times I really wonder about doing this with either of us. But part of it, at least in respect towards Drew, is that I'm very protective of him, as my one and only child, and I hate to see others hurt his feelings. I sometimes have to say things that aren't always the kindest to get my point across, but I also reinforce a lot of positive things with him. He's already working with a speech deficit, and I don't want him to feel any big negative self-esteem issues spurned on by anyone. I hope that when Drew is older and understands more about growing up and what I've done for him, I hope he realizes how much I truly do love him and how much I do for him to make him feel like a success.

In the meantime, I asked JC if maybe I could have him and Drew come to the next graduation to cheer me on, as the times are either at 5 PM one day, or 6 PM the next day, and I'm thinking the 6PM one is better. He thought that was a great idea, and that they'd enjoy seeing the other teens and adults do their stuff. I told him it was pretty cool to watch the black belts do their stuff. We'll see if it spurs Drew on to do well.

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