I had my belt test today. I reached the rank of Gokkyu and earned my green belt!
It wasn't easy. It ended up being a private test, and a really intense workout for over an hour. Toward the end, as I was delivering a series of roundhouse elbow strikes to "Bob" (the standing punching bag) I felt something in my left shoulder go "pop" and then my hand went all tingly and I couldn't raise my arm.
I felt like Daniel-san in The Karate Kid, and I wished for Mr. Miyagi to run into the dojo and rub his hands together and fix my shoulder. But instead I was given an opportunity to defend myself with whatever was still working. I did yet another form without using my left arm, and then I had to exact my revenge on Bob with another fifty strikes, this time using only my right arm and legs. I did some punches and kicks, and then I decided to come crashing down with a full force shuto strike with the side of my right hand onto the top of Bob...
...except the top of Bob wasn't padded. (OWWWWWWW!)
So I'm blogging while I alternate icing my left shoulder and my right hand.
And as I left the studio victorious with my new green belt and matching green t-shirt, I noticed that my new sensei underestimated my normal shirt size and gave me a smaller one. But when I got home and tried it on, it fit! My exuberance over that discovery helped mitigate the intense pain of lifting my arm to try it on.
It's not that easy being green;
Being a Gokkyu with a broken wing.
When I see my hand and shoulder turning black, or blue, or red,
Or something much more colorful like that.
It's not easy being green
It seems I can't do some very ordinary things
And people tend to pass me over 'cause I'm
Wearing the same outfit everyday
(To painful to change clothes).
But green's the color of Spring
And green meant I had balance,
And memory, and neuromuscular strength--
Like a reassuring neuro exam!
When green is all there is to be
It could make you wonder why, but why wonder why?
Wonder, I am green and it'll do fine; it's beautiful --
And I think it's what I want to be!
(until I'm ready for brown stripe...)