Some Good News in a Summer of Bad

Discussion in 'General Martial Arts Talk' started by DocWard, Aug 20, 2019.

  1. DocWard

    DocWard Purple Belt

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    For those who thought I had dropped off the planet, I thought I would let you know I'm still here. It has been a very challenging summer for me, to say the least. Trying to jump back and forth between jobs and still find time to practice my martial arts was difficult, but not out of the question. I was training for a tournament, when while sparring, I was throwing a kick at the same time as my opponent and managed to end up with a beautiful knot about the size of half a tennis ball right below my knee. About a month or so ago, and it is still healing.

    About the time I thought to myself, "Self, you should go see your doctor about this," my wife was setting up her class room (she teaches science) and managed to drop a 120 pound lab table on her big toe. A comminuted fracture (think fragments), severe laceration right behind and under the nail bed, soft tissue damage... I was a medic in the National Guard, and when I arrived, my first (unspoken) thought was, "she's going to lose her toe." She hasn't but it is still a mess, and still painful.

    Just when I thought things couldn't get any worse... Did I mention never to think that? It will come back to bite you if you do. At any rate, just when I thought so, her mother was diagnosed with stage four cancer. My wife's mother has been like a true mother to me over the past thirty years, so it hurts more than I can explain. Originating in the gall bladder, her cancer has metastasized, and at this point the only real treatment is palliative care. She declined chemo. At eighty, with compromised cardiac, renal and hepatic components, I understand why. With my wife mostly immobile, it has meant I have had to step up and do more.

    Lately I've missed as many lessons at karate as I've made it seems. Maybe more. But somehow, when I went in today, I decided to complete my testing for my black belt. I'd previously submitted my thesis. I've demonstrated various techniques over time. All that was left were four kata (two empty hand and two weapon), plus the kata of my own devising. Somehow, despite being more nervous than I have been in a very long time, I managed to keep breathing, and keep my mind focused.

    I passed my test and received my Shodan from Dan Distelhorst, who trained under Jay T. Will, who trained under Ed Parker and Al Tracy. So, that's good news.

    IMG_0806.jpg
     
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  2. Buka

    Buka Grandmaster

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    Doc, first and foremost, hearts and prayers to you and your family. Stay strong, brother.

    Secondly, congratulations. Dude, you look smashing in Black!
     
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  3. DocWard

    DocWard Purple Belt

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    Thanks, it is appreciated, and I'm trying every day to help where I can, and to be there for them.

    Thanks. I appreciate that!
     
  4. Xue Sheng

    Xue Sheng All weight is underside

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    Prayers to you and you family

    And good job and congratulations on the Black belt
     
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  5. gpseymour

    gpseymour MT Moderator Staff Member

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    That's a lot of trials in a short time, man. I'll keep you and your family in my thoughts.

    Good on you finding it in you to keep pushing at something you actually had some control over, and getting that belt. And yeah, lookin' good!
     
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  6. Headhunter

    Headhunter Senior Master

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    Sorry to hear that stuff.

    But congrats.

    Also just out of curiousity does your school not do the red stripes on the belt. As I don't see a stripe on yours or maybe I'm just blind lol
     
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  7. DocWard

    DocWard Purple Belt

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    I had the options of stripes for my brown belt, but since my instructor doesn't wear stripes, I don't see that I need to. There is a red stripe on the black belt on my certificate, though.
     
  8. Brian King

    Brian King Master of Arts

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    Prayers lifted.

    Not all lessons are taught and learned in the dojo. Your mother in law is teaching, you are teaching and your wife is teaching. Keep moving forward as best you can.

    Warmest Regards
    Brian King
     
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  9. DocWard

    DocWard Purple Belt

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    Thank you. I agree my mother-in-law has always taught me how to be graceful under pressure, and continues to do so. My wife is teaching me to keep moving forward through pain and adversity. She's taught me much, much more over the years. I'm trying as best I can.
     
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  10. _Simon_

    _Simon_ Master of Arts

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    So sorry it's been quite a hard period for you mate... that really doesn't sound easy... am thinking of you all and hope you can find some comfort in each others' presence.

    But wow... so amazing about the Shodan, a massive congratulations, that is something to be truly proud of, and to show you there is still hope and joy in life. Well done mate
     
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  11. W.Bridges

    W.Bridges Yellow Belt

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    Prayers for you and your family.

    Congratulations on your black belt!
     
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  12. DocWard

    DocWard Purple Belt

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    Thank you both!
     
  13. Yokozuna514

    Yokozuna514 Purple Belt

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    Congratulations on the new belt and sorry to hear about all your troubles. Wishing you better days ahead.
     
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