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I tried to hide my tears from my four year old son when I couldn’t hear his name in the announcement by the judges for 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th ranks. It was the tournament for all levels Martial arts aspirants at Boston level. I never saw his serious face. He came back to me and said, “Don’t worry, I will show the 1st position in next tournament for you”. The statement was bit embarrassing for me as if he wanted to win just for my happiness.
The following day, I kept thinking why he made such a statement. Apart from this I was wondering why my son didn’t win the trophy inspite of his outstanding performance in the class through out the year. His teacher said once that its amazing that a four year old kid can remember all the steps of one pinon (one pinon is “Form” in Martial arts which has so many moves in a particular sequence) with perfection. Then why did he forget one step at the time of his real performance. Infact the all the rankers were not known all the steps of one pinon. Though they performed all the steps they knew flawlessly. I could only correlate it to his stress of performing best, which was rooted by me knowingly inside his brain. I remembered when I signed up for his tournament. I was all excited as it’s goanna be his first tournament. I wanted him to win because I knew he can do it. So I took all the pain of getting him practiced every single day one month prior to the tournament. I worked really hard to pep up his mood as he was just a little. Even the last night before the tournament I got him checked for the last time if he still doing perfectly. Before the tournament, he was all playful to see so many kids of his age, but I was bit serious to force him to get practiced as he can enjoy his friend rest of the year.
I came back from my flesh back and took a back seat. My son was my victim. I was determined to reverse my roll. I started ignoring his performance in the class. I made him relazie time to tim that he is coming to Karete class for his fitness and discipline and also can enjoy with the other kids of his age. I even stopped asking about what he was doing in the class though I was always there to listen him eagerly if he told me something about the forms and sparing after the class. I never asked him to practice at home but if he showed something I would take all of my interest even if I was in the middle of my house hold chores. In a year he got the feeling as if no one is bothering about his Karate. Last Sunday he had his tournament after a year. He is five years old now. As usual he was again playing with his friend before starting the tournament. It struck to my mind that to get him practiced at least once. But then, I asked myself why I need him to win and put him under stress. He went to the court and as if he has come to have fun with so many friends of same age and interest. He was all playful and talkative sitting in the tournament court. Even he was not very alert when he was called for the performance. He didn’t know if any one out there to bother about his performance. The Judges announced his name for 2nd rank, I stood up to take his photos and had non stop tears not for his 2nd rank but for saving his childhood him from performance stress. He told me later that he think he could get 1st place if had shown his anger (required in Karate while performing the forms). I kept quiet as 1st rank no longer was my happiness. I need my son to enjoy every single moment of the life with out performance stress. Performance comes spontaneously and effortlessly.
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