Never quit, indeed

Last week M earned his yellow belt; this week he had the honor of receiving it. This was a success for us both. While the first couple karate classes went swimmingly, M soon found himself overwhelmed by the physical demands of the class. In the weeks and months that followed, I found myself torn apart by M’s frustration. He’s one of the youngest in his class. Add to that the exhaustion of full day kindergarten and his apprehension about anything too physical, and M floundered. My first instinct, of course, was to pull him out. It’s too much, I told my husband. I’m not sure who I meant it was too much for.

We both ran a marathon this month. This is M at his finish line, which as of now is not any sort of finish. Turns out he’s really liking karate. He wants his belts on the wall, the white first, then the yellow, then whatever follows. Plus his test board, broken in three places. He still has trouble keeping up sometimes–he’s five, for heaven’s sake, and I’d probably wonder if he didn’t–but his perseverance impresses me more than any roundhouse kick every could. I’m thankful that I gave him the chance to show it.

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