Sunday, November 16, 2008

Not Ready For This

Last night while getting Jameson to bed, he told me, "Mom, I don't wanna die.".  My heart broke a little, and I didn't really know what to say.  He continued with the following questions:

Am I going to die?
Why do I have to die?
Will the man that made me make me better so I can come back?
Are you going to die?
Is Dad going to die?
Who is going to be my Mom and Dad if you die?

Bombarded with these questions, I didn't really know how to answer.  I didn't want to lie to him, but I didn't want to scare him either.  I did my best to reassure him, but he just wanted to hear me say that none of us would die.  I couldn't do that, so he started crying in the middle of his questioning because I think he sensed my inability to fully reassure him.

"Yes, we're going to die, but hopefully not for a long time.  Honey, I can't promise you that I'm not going to die, but hopefully Momma will be around until you're a big man and you have your own kids.  I'm sorry I don't know all the answers to your questions, but no one really knows."  I felt myself sinking.  He persisted, and I couldn't help but cry as I empathized with his sadness and fear.  I called James in the room, and I'm not sure he did any better.

Wow, I was not prepared for these questions or these emotions yet.  He's only 3, and I guess I didn't think the fear of death would enter his mind until he was a lot older.  I was wrong.  Tonight, he told me he didn't want to die because he was scared.  This time he was much calmer, and he let it go after I tried my best to tell him it was okay to be scared.  I told him I thought we're all a little scared, but we should live our lives to enjoy our life, not to waste it worrying about something we can't change.  He seemed somewhat satisfied with that response although I'm sure it's not the last I will hear of it.

With all this talk of death, I couldn't help but think about my own worries.  What if one or both of us does die?  Who will be their "mom & dad" if we both do?  What if my children don't get to know their parents?  Or worse, I can't even bear to think about other scenarios.  I think it would be great if I would just take my own advice.  I've said my prayers, so I guess I have no choice but to leave this in God's hands.  Now, I'm just praying for all the right answers.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Always Up For a Good Fight

On Saturday, I'm scheduled to compete in a Tae Kwon Do tournament against a bunch of other "old" ladies, and I've been doing mental prep all week. You see, I don't take competition lightly. In fact, anyone that knows me will tell you that I play to win.

Whoever said that 'winning isn't important' I think probably spent a lot of time losing. I refuse to teach my children that learning is the most important lesson learned in competition. It's not. Sure, it's important to learn from both our failures and our successes, but, when it comes to competition, winning is success. That said, my goal this weekend is to sweep all three events: forms, breaking, & sparring.

Earlier this year, I competed in another TKD tournament, but I only competed in two events: breaking and sparring. I won both then, so I figure I should have a good shot at winning all three this time around. I'm entering this tournament as a senior blue belt, which means I could compete with green, blue, brown, or red belt competitors. As a competitor in the Senior Women's Division, I figure I have 2 things going for me: speed and power. I also have 2 things working against me: height and a bum left knee.

I am lucky to be on the young end of my age group since most women over 30 have lost a bit of speed. I spent a little time watching real sparring on youtube to pick up some pointers. Most people tend to stand there when the center judge tells you to start fighting, so my strategy has been to be explosive from the beginning. I figure the fight is over if I can get 3 quick points in before my opponent is really even ready (rule: first to 3 points or 2 minute fight). I won last tournament with this strategy, so I'll let you know if it serves me well.

Here's some real fighters in case you're curious what it's like.