Monday, July 16, 2007

Once a champion, always a champion

I know that title sounds a little snobbish, perhaps, but it's about what I decided to do today. I finally made the decision that as much as I finally have another tournament that is practically in my backyard, I'm not going to compete. While I have the basics of the whole form down, to truly get it into competition shape in less than a week just ain't gonna happen. And yes, I could still go and compete, but in thinking about it, first of all, why waste the entry money when I know that I'm not going in prepared? Yes, I could compete in weapons and sparring fine, in theory, but it's the form that is the crux of it all, and that just doesn't make sense. Second, related to that, it wouldn't be fair to the judges and other competitors to waste their time with me doing a half-ass job while they are keeping up a high level of competition, especially those competing have been practicing and such. No, that's not fair to them. Let them truly compete and not waste their time as well. While it'd probably improve their odds because I wouldn't do well, it's not worth that. The other thing is that my knee is bothering me a bit. It's not worth it to me to agitate it right now. There are too many things going on that to have to have surgery or even be limping a lot would not be good right now. Just all the way around, it didn't make sense.

However, I am still going. I had already made the decision anyway, but I wanted to go support Sandy, as I know she is still competing anyway, and an ATA friend we've made (more Sandy than myself), Kathy R., is coming down from NY to compete, so we are hanging out at the Pennington ATA the night before, and then I'll cheer them on the next day. I've also been dubbed "official" photographer for the event for them, and that's fine with me! I don't mind. I still get to go, and knowing what to look for, that will help vs. an "amateur". I'm known for some good candid shots! If I only had a better camera...

I'm a little disappointed, mostly in myself. I think this is part of the burnout too. It's been advised that I need to take a break, and perhaps this is part of the break. This way, I'm not putting as much pressure on myself. I am weapons state champ for my current category right now (hence, "once a champion, always a champion"), and nobody can take that away from me. They can qualify as the 2008 champion, but I'm the 2007 champion. ;-) I'm disappointed in myself that I haven't pushed myself harder to be ready. In many ways, I am ready. But again, I don't need the stress right now, especially with non-TKD things in my life being much more stressful. You have to pick your fights, and fighting with myself to do phenominally (or at least my absolute best) at TKD competition is not one of them right now.

Still want to get the black belt done ASAP. But taking this off my plate should help. There's another tourney in DE in late September. Perhaps things will calm down by then for me to do that. For now, this is what I have to do. There is a certain element of guilt from my heart, but my head is telling me not to feel that way.

There are PLENTY of people who get their black belts and NEVER compete, and they are perfectly happy with that. There's no reason that I can't be happy with that too. Perhaps I will wait a while, and just start competing later when I become a black belt instead. I'm sure I'd have a shot at color belt stuff for the short amount of time I have left in the category, but my time as a 30-something 1st degree is going to be much shorter, and perhaps I should relax, and regather myself to make the most of the season in that capacity instead. And I can be okay with that.

So, just like how I have to approach my "outside" life these days, I just have to take things one day at a time.


Becky said...

I'm a black belt and I've never competed. Mostly because I can't afford entry fees for both myself and and my son, so I let him do the tournaments. He is more interested in that kind of thing anyway.

Miss Chris said...

It sounds like you are in a really good place mentally right now regarding your karate. I hope it helps you enjoy it more.