It is Grading Night.
It’s not a surprise.
We’ve known about the date for weeks. In fact we’ve known this was “likely” happening months in advance. Heck, we signed up for this “punishment” so what did we expect.
Not all Muay Thai programs grade their students. Then again not all Muay Thai dojang’s focus on technique which is what I particularily love about being a student at T.H.A. Martial Arts Toronto.
That doesn’t mean to say I enjoy grading!
I’ve gone from White to Yellow and tonight is my grading for Orange.
I’ve been to classes, I’ve practised on the mat, I’ve practised in my head on the way to work, on my way home from work, while eating dinner, in my sleep. I’ve been mentally living my moves for weeks….mostly in my head.
All day, while working, I’ve been pushing the thoughts of grading out of my head. I pace my condo, strum my ukulele, roll my hand wraps. And yet here I am 3 hours before I must present myself at the dojang and the idea of this grading feel like punishment to my brain and later, to my body! I am contemplating, why oh why I ever thought Muay Thai was a good idea!
I am imagining a very exhausted, tired Donnafay. Picking myself up from the mat. Wishing I had better conditioning, better footwork, more focused punches, killer kicks.
But I have committed myself.
I pull myself back to the moment of now.
Take a deap breath.
As prepared as I’ll ever be for what awaits….