Archive | January, 2016

Molly and the Indomitable Spirit

30 Jan

I attended a taekwondo tournament this past Saturday. At two hours away from Duluth, it is one of the closer tournaments available to our students, so I encourage them to participate since there are few such convenient opportunities. Tournament competition is an infrequent experience for nearly all of our students, so I like for them to have it and to benefit from it.

One student of ours who participated was Molly, a petite eight-year-old girl. She and her brother Sam participated last year; however, this year, Sam chose not to participate, largely due to the overbearing sparring match he had last year. As a smaller tournament, organizers are hard pressed to split competitors into ideally appropriate divisions based on age, rank and experience. Sam had gotten consistently scored on in sparring by another boy who was, I believe, older, bigger, higher rank and more experienced.
Even though Sam had competed well in forms and breaking competitions, the sparring experience Continue reading

Thank You

1 Jan

Note: This post was originally begun in early November, nearly two months ago. I put it aside as I processed life matters in the wake of the events I describe. I now complete it on New Year’s Day.

(November 9, 2015) I am writing this while in Fall River, Massachusetts, the city where I was born and raised. My mom and I are waiting to pick up my step-dad’s remains. He was cremated last week. Twenty-two days ago, I flew here on short notice, the day after John went into the ICU with severe pneumonia. We endured two weeks of very intensive care of John, a time during which he was initially in a dementia and then soon sedated and intubated with the hope he could overcome infections and all sorts of system irregularities. Continue reading

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