Take things as they are. Punch when you have to punch. Kick when you have to kick.
~ Bruce Lee
My first karate class was an interesting experience. I knew beforehand that there would probably not be many adults in the class - but I didn't bank on being the only one over 11. And, for some reason, I never factored in the parents watching the class, waiting on their kids. And this karate class was held on one of four basketball courts at the I-55 YMCA - the other three being full of people playing basketball and watching the old white woman taking karate lessons.
Just as I was feeling a little less conspicuous, one of the instructors brought me a karate suit and told me to put it on. "No, I'm OK," I protested. She said, "No, you need it. You'll feel much more at ease." How is that I think? But for once I keep my mouth shut.
Let me tell you, girls, a karate uniform does not do much for the figure. I think it could make Uma Thurman look chubby. At 5' 2" I felt like a giant marshmallow. Then I didn't realize that I should have kept a shirt on underneath the karate uniform. Every time we had to drop to the floor and do push ups - which was quite often since the little boy next to me would not stop talking to me and you get push-ups if you're caught talking - I probably flashed half the gym.
I learned that belt colors are very important to these kids. The ones with two color stripes lord it over the ones with one - they were even competitive with me, a total new-comer who quite obviously did not know a block from a punch or a roundhouse from the can-can. When my line mate said he could tie belts better than me (as mine was falling off all the time), I said, "Yeah, well I make a lot more money than you, so there." And I got 10 more push-ups. (I'm not sure how much I'm going to learn about karate but I should have some fabulous arms when this is all over!)
Karate is supposed to teach you many spiritual lessons in addition to the physical side. Yesterday, it definitely taught me humility. ;)
After it was over, I quizzed Quentin on the class. Would he rather take it at school again with his friends and not make Mommy suffer through abject humiliation every Tuesday and Thursday? (I know it was my idea in the first place but the humiliation was worse than I had prepared for.) No dice. I'm stuck in the marshmallow uniform.
The Karate Mom saga will continue next Tuesday - but luckily I get a break on Thursday night because it's my turn to host my Girls' Night Out Group.