Daniel completed his yellow belt testing tonight.
He started Tae Kwon Do in June of this year. It was a belated Christmas present and really only chosen because he couldn’t find a science camp that he liked. However, it has blossomed into something he really enjoys. He has classes twice a week and has been both dreading and looking forward to testing for his first colored belt.
In order to achieve yellow belt, he had to learn and memorize a routine consisting of 24 moves. He also had to memorize the names of nearly as many moves and be able to perform them on command. Watching Daniel stare off into space this morning as he tried to put away the milk in the pantry, I had my own apprehensions.
I videotaped his testing on my small Cannon point and shoot camera with bonus video function. The video is grainy but I watched it over and over tonight. He was brilliant! His form was beautiful to watch. His focus amazing!
He struggled with following specific off-the-cuff commands. However, anything he had already prepared for, he performed exquisitely. For once, I had brief glimpses of my son without the film of Asperger’s. I struggle to express what that felt like and what that did for me! My resolve to fight for him, both in the academic and personal arenas was strengthened and renewed.
Daniel’s struggles were not far behind. As I was packing up, Daniel and another kid were talking about what would happen if there was a surprise attack. Daniel, in the excitement of the situation and moment decided to turn the talk into action and punched the kid in the stomach. Immediately, Daniel froze with a look of complete chagrin! After having Daniel appologize, I told him that he was never to use these moves outside of class. The kid was still wearing his sparing gear vest and so his injury was minimal. However, Daniel was so upset it nearly ruined his recent success. That is, until he watched himself on video with a half-shy, glowing smile!