Responsible parenting and leadership are a start. In between reaching for the sky (Toy Story rocks).

Screw the darkness. I prefer the lightness of Pop.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

The Resolve of Buddy Bea

Watching her bow at the front of the mat was thrilling. Pride lit up inside me like white-hot spotlights at a Hollywood premiere. It took everything in my power not to coach and encourage her from the sidelines like an enthusiastically overbearing daddy.

"Okay, Beatrice. Count off for me," said instructor Mike.

"Hana, dhul, sehtt, nehtt," Bea answered, counting in Korean.

"That's great, buddy."

Buddy -- instructor Mike called them all buddy -- even Bryce as she bounced around the mat trying, and failing, to follow instructions (which led to her eventual mat removal; she's too young yet anyway). Bryce is a stick of dynamite with a short fuse, another story for another blog post.

But Buddy Bea, she was determined to learn each and every martial arts move. Some she somewhat mastered, while others she struggled with, but through it all her resolve moved me to the point of tears. Seriously.

And this was only class number two for her. After the Mama had taken her the first time to Lairds Academy of Martial Arts, Bea immediately embraced martial arts and excitedly shared with us all what she learned when she returned home.

All except the breathing part. That part, which includes a power shout when breathing out, bothered her. That because of the auditory sensitivity and earlier delays she's experience since she was very little.

So prior to the second class starting, the one I went to with the Mama and both girls and where Bea received her uniform, we talked with the instructors about her auditory sensitivity. They were gracious, but when the class started and Bea herself articulated she didn't like the loud breathing, the primary instructor, Mike, simply told her:

"You're a good student, Beatrice, you'll do fine."

And that was that. She actually smiled and continued on happily with the rest of the class, completely engrossed in learning, with her daddy tongue poke and all. Plus, with all the Mama (and a little Daddy) gumption in their DNA, Bea and Bryce both are go-getters, and Bryce, well, she really helps to drive Bea out of her comfort zone. Amen.

Although her intellect has never been in question, just three years ago we were really worried about where she'd be today developmentally and socially. The resolve of buddy Bea has proven to have a resilience (so far) we had always hoped for, especially on the eve of kindergarten.

Her growing confidence, social skills and longing to learn has been a blessing for all of us. This martial arts class will help improve her coordination, flexibility, focus, patience, self control, and the importance of never initiating violence.

Here's to resolve, kids. And a hana, and a dhul, and a sehtt, and a nehtt...

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