Friday, September 28, 2007

Through the mirror of my mind

Sorry it has been a while since I've written a post. It's not like I haven't been training; this has been probably one of my best months in terms of attendance. I've been busy in my non-kung fu life -- some of it meh, a lot it really awesome. I've been doing a lot of reflection during this crucial stage of my training, and to be honest, I didn't feel quite ready to commit any of my thoughts to concrete words.

Yeah, yeah, we know -- testing is just one week away (eek!), and it's been pressing at my mind. I had somewhat convinced myself to be prepared for the possibility that Shifu might not think me ready to test for the 3rd form. On the testing sheets, I have yiluquan next to my name (and yes, I know I oughtn't read into it too much), and it seemed like in the last few weeks, everyone was learning more and more of their form except me. I felt stuck in erluquan purgatory.

I had resigned myself to the likelihood that I could be stuck in Level 1 another six months. But why use the word "stuck?" Another six months of L1 would undoubtedly increase my endurance, make me sharper and faster, and make me more confident in my execution of erluquan. Subsequently, I told myself, fine, you will learn the end of erluquan whenever you do, and in the meanwhile, just kick ass and burn through class with a stronger fire in your heart. Improve what you do know and it will all follow through. And if I get to test erluquan, awesome. Awesome because it means I will have completed yet another milestone of training, and awesome because it means L2 is around the corner...and if not, I will do it when I'm ready, which is also awesome. Because it's not about this one single point in my training; it's about reminding myself that the mere fact that I have committed myself to a beautiful lifetime of kung fu -- the whole shebang -- is the awesomest.

This weekend will be my birthday, and my parents are taking me out on Saturday after training for a special lunch. As a present to me, I asked that they come to the City earlier and come watch class, and observe me and my fellow dorks and all of our super duper chi. I want them to understand the commitment I've made to myself, and I want to show them the amazing things I've learned to do with my body. I want them to see how happy training makes me and the sense of accomplishment I gain each time we sweat buckets.

In the off chance my parents don't show up, I will be a little disappointed, but it won't change how hard I push myself during that class, or any other for that matter. It doesn't matter whether Shifu thinks I'm ready for L2 or not. It doesn't matter in the long run if I pass erluquan this time or not. What matters is that I am honest with myself, and I don't sell myself short, and I train as hard as I can. I will learn whatever I have to learn, even if it takes me a little more time, but as I've done over and over again, from the very first caijiao, I will stick it through, and just friggin' do it.

So, anyway, I finally did finish erluquan last night after trudging through it for exactly seven months to the date! (I started it on February 27th). So happy -- after watching Shifu send another handful of people off to work on forms with others, he finally plucked me out of line to finish and polish erluquan with Richu with 40 minutes left in class. I think it was possibly one of my sweatiest classes ever, and I felt woozy, but so proud. So proud to be sticking it through. And excited to polish it...loads.


  1. well said: it's the journey not the destination! more chi, baby. continue to train harder.

  2. You rocked last night! I agree with Chad but feel like the journey IS the destination!

  3. richu is right! we need to enjoy being where we are at any given time not just in training but in life! thanks for the reminder.

  4. Yeah I know why you haven't been posting ;) Seriously though, you are all so right. I am the perpetual "look ahead" personality. It's nice to be reminded to enjoy the now. And I do when I'm training with you guys.

  5. shaolin gods love to eat...cup...cake

  6. Congratulations on finishing cupcakes!! I mean erluquan!