Archive for February, 2012

Triple Haikuesday 02.28.12

February 28, 2012 Leave a comment

So tuned out that I

did not see the ambulance.

Good thing it saw me.


I don’t know if I

 should push through or pull back to

find a steady pace.


I have such patience

for everyone but myself.

Those standards are high.

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Mr. Latimer is an easy man to please.

February 26, 2012 2 comments

It’s always important to know what kind of things bring your loved ones joy. This way, you will always know how to cheer them up when they are feeling down. Through a text message conversation, I discovered three things that make my dad happy:

1. Thai food

*2. Getting a sling shot as a present

**3. Hearing that my former sensei came to judo and beat me up.



*Please pray for me. Mr. Latimer with a sling shot means that I will get pelted by various painful objects the next time we see each other, which will be this Friday for Thai food.

**Please double pray for me. Mr. Latimer most likely became so gleeful at the thought of me flying through the air and crashing into the floor that he will probably come to judo soon just to destroy me.


Getting there.

February 26, 2012 1 comment

This past Friday, I went to an open mat at a nearby judo club. Now, I’d been looking forward to this for weeks. Open mats are a great night to work with people you don’t normally train with and you have two to three hours to go as many rounds as you want. Since my grandmom died almost two weeks ago, I was thinking that I needed a good night of balls-out judo. Open mat would be perfect to indulge my smashy feelings.

As with every open mat, I started to feel nervous in the hour leading up to it. Sometimes I get really self-conscious about my skill-level, especially since I became a brown belt. I know I’m not supposed to care what other people think and belts don’t matter, but sometimes I can’t help it. I worry that my skill level doesn’t match my belt. So as I entered the club, I began to feel my confidence waning. I thought I would sit out the first round to watch and let myself get comfortable. Of course, this was really just me trying to avoid my fears. I could sit and watch the first 10 rounds and still feel nervous.

But somehow, I didn’t sit the first round. I went with a girl from the host club that I’d gone with before and saw that she also recently got her brown belt. She had great energy and we had a really fun match. As we bowed out, we smiled in gratitude for good round and slapped hands. I remembered that I love judo because it’s one of the most fun things in the world to me. There was a black belt woman there whom I’d never met before. After a moment’s pause, I went up to her, introduced myself, and asked her to go the next round. She agreed. Of course, she trounced me, but again, the energy between us was awesome.

The rest of my matches followed suit. No matter if I got in a throw or not, I could feel that my partners and I were both full of passion for the sport we love and were having a blast. I also felt mutual respect. I admired my partners for their advanced skill and technique and based on their positive feedback, it seemed like they appreciated that I could still give them a decent fight even if I’m not quite at their level.

That was a good feeling. I started to think that maybe I do have some potential. Perhaps the thing that will help me unlock it will be a conscious, unrelenting effort to give judo everything I have and accept all it has to offer me.

Categories: Judo Tags: , , , , , ,

Haikuesday 02.21.12

February 21, 2012 Leave a comment

On days like today,

I need a hooded sweatshirt

and a good buddy.

It’s not quite the same.

February 20, 2012 Leave a comment

I strongly advocate for the creation of one’s own forward momentum;

however, I do not appreciate the expectation

to charge forward with eyes closed,

ignoring what was lost

and allowing the same amount of time

to miss a person

as one would for a missing wallet

or the inconvenience of a stolen car.

Categories: poetry Tags: , ,

Three traditions.

February 19, 2012 4 comments

This past December, I was a bridesmaid for the first time. Dressed in turquoise and gold, I carried a bouquet of orchids as I walked down the aisle to stand by my cousin and his girlfriend as they made their declaration of love and commitment to each other. I felt honored to be among the other close friends and family they chose to be apart of their ceremony. I had a brief moment of humbling awe as I thought about taking part in such tradition, since my parents never placed much value on anything ceremonial. As I looked at my cousin, I couldn’t help but think of our mothers, who were close as sisters, and all that our family has survived and all of the good that will come.

Yesterday, I was pallbearer for the first time. Dressed in black, I carried my grandmother’s casket down the aisle of her church and then from the hearse to her grave site. I felt proud to carry my grandmother with my dad and and our cousins for our family’s goodbye. In the midst of the sadness and solemnity of the moment, I looked at my dad and thought of my grandmother, his own mother, remembering all that our family has survived and all of the good that will come.

This morning, I went to Sunday judo practice for the one millionth time. Dressed in white, I worked with my first sensei ever. He was in for practice with his daughter, Kristin, who was in town for the weekend to introduce her fiance to her father. I felt nervous to work with my coach for the first time in about 20 years. Then after I finished a round of randori with Kristin, I couldn’t help but think of how long she and her dad have been a part of my family, and how they helped make judo practice feel like a tradition. I felt so happy remembering all of joy we’ve shared in that past and all of the good that will come.

The art of letting go.

February 15, 2012 2 comments

I thought I was well-practiced at the art of letting go,

but it turns out that in some cases

practice does not make perfect.

Every end is different,

with new holes to fill

and old questions to relinquish,

and the subtle, creeping, clinging feeling

that something in the ground I walk on has changed.





Categories: poetry Tags: , , ,