Category: Taekwondo

Orange Belts & Bruises

The last time I posted I was a nervous, bumbling wreck…and I was freaking out for nothing!

Well at first it didn’t seem like it. I was home all day Tuesday, the day of the test. Mario was out having a stressful day himself on his day off. I showered, put my wet hair in a pony tail, picked up the boys from school and got home to blow-dry and straighten my hair. And what happens? The power goes out! The first thing I think is, “OMG! The boys’ test is at 6! The light better come back on by then!”

Mom checks at her apartment: no light either. I call Mary to tell her about the problem and she checks with the city. Sure enough, 1,000 customers in the area don’t have power. GREAT! John was working so I couldn’t even go to his house to do my hair there! I was moping for an hour and FINALLY, the light comes back on! I do my hair and then Mario and I go to McDonald’s to get dinner (nuggets for everyone, bleh now that I remember…). Yadira had agreed to watch Emily while we tested so Mom could go watch us test. So I was still getting ready and still had to drop off Emily. Mary went ahead and took the boys to their test a 6, since I was running late and traffic was awful. Once Emily was dropped off, Mario, Mom, Alaethia and I went to the school.

It was around 6:15 and the test hadn’t started yet. I was rushing for nothing, but I was glad we were there and actually acquired seats. I grew more and more nervous as the boys’ test went on. But I told myself to suck it up and just do it. The sparring would supposedly only go on for about 30 seconds. As long as I slid back and kicked once in a while and just generally kept myself from getting hit my arm and knee would be fine.

The boys did excellently. Jaylen remembered to squat more during the Horse Stance and Eenan kicked high. They did great in sparring and broke all their boards. Eenan broke one with a Chito-chagi (sp?), which is a straight up-and-down kick. It took two tries, but he did it! The little girl (who’s Jaylen’s age) that was a blue-advanced going to red belt couldn’t kick one of her boards with the Hetsu. She wasn’t using the correct technique so she kept hitting the board with her ankle repeatedly. I felt so bad for her :(. At least she can execute the Hetsu for the most part; that’s the kick I fell flat on my back trying to do and I’m terrified of doing it now.

Ernesto gave Eenan all A+ and Jaylen got all A+’s except for his punches. But that’s something he can easily work on.

I ran to the pizza place across the street since the light in the bathroom at the school went out. I was so embarrassed but I HAD to go. I ran back when I was done and bought some shin guards since I didn’t want even more bruises up and down my legs. I was so nervous, and it didn’t help that my whole family was there and the place was FULL of spectators. It was the largest audience I’d seen during one of my tests.

So we’re going through the test. Do the basics: horse stance, side punch, low punch all the kicks. I do fine in the one-step sparring and chagiderio. AND THEN it’s time for the sparring part. I fixed the knee pad I’d put on over my welt and bruise, took a deep breath and began to walk to Mario and my stuff so I can put the shin guards on and Ernesto stops me. He asks how my wrist is doing and I tell him that it still hurts and try and turn it and wince. He’s thoughtful as he looks at my wrist and says, “No. I don’t think you should spar. The last thing we need is for you to get even more hurt.” I’m completely shocked and glance over at Luis, who’s got a smirk on his face and probably thinking, “You got lucky!”

I ask Ernesto, “Are you sure?!” I didn’t want to look like a wimp! “I can…keep my arm close and try not to block with this hand.” He says no, but I owe them sparring twice next test. I didn’t know whether that was a good or bad thing LOL.

When the girls are fighting I can’t help but think, ‘Dammit! I could have taken them!’ Oh well. Next time.

The board-breaking is next and I execute all 3 kicks flawlessly. I broke one with a side-kick, which I’d already done before and did well, too. A chito-chagi (straight up-and-down kick) and the last one was a mula (donkey kick where you spin around and kick under your body). I did the mula really well, thank goodness! That’s the one that I was most nervous about!

We get our usual helpful lecture on what we need to work on before we get our belts and then we got our belts. It’s the best feeling :). We took pictures with the group and we get our stuff together and go. I tell Mario how excited I am that I broke the boards so well and can’t WAIT to see the pictures. He says, “Um. I didn’t take video.” WHAT?! I couldn’t believe it! The screen-caps I could have gotten from them would have been so awesome! Oh well. I tried not to be TOO upset.

The guys promised that by next test in June I’d be ready for sparring. Darnit, I better!!

You Must Fight to Win, Grasshoppa

I’m in such a shitty mood right now. I don’t even know WHERE to begin. I guess I’ll begin from the beginning.

I woke up with a feeling of foreboding. The boys and my Taekwondo test (yellow-advanced to orange belt) is tomorrow and I just felt so nervous, especially about the sparring part *stomach flips*. I was possibly even more nervous about the fact that my period is about 3 weeks late, give or take, and I’m REALLY praying it doesn’t decide to make an appearance (literally) DURING my test!

I know I can’t be pregnant since I had my tubal (I REALLY hope I’m not. Everyone always cheerfully reminds me, “You COULD be the 1%!”), so since I’m not, what the hell else is going on? The hypochondriac in me starts replaying all those Mystery Diagnosis episodes I’ve ever seen that have anything to do with the uterus.

I had to wake up early because I had an appointment, so I got ready and tried to shake the feeling away. Ate a quick breakfast of milk, homemade Rice Crispies Treat and a banana (I know, gross). Mom came over to watch the girls, Mario left to work and I went to the appointment. Appointment was over and then I went to Walmart for a few things.

I’m driving home and see the Golden Arch up ahead. I felt really down and thought, An iced coffee and some chocolate chip cookies should cheer me up! So there I go to the McDonald’s drive thru. I know better. I’d been eating really well and avoiding junk food (I’m finally at 119 lbs. My goal is 110). BUT. Since I know that Luis (my TKD instructor), John and I and several others are starting P90X this coming Sunday at 12 noon, I’ve been eating everything in sight, weather it’s healthy or not. My logic is, “Ehh, after Sunday I’mma lose all these pounds and calories!”

I get home and John’s already here, paying his bills online. He shakes his head in disappointment when I emerge through the door with my medium coffee and cookies in hand. I tell him how I’ve been stuffing my face like there’s no tomorrow and he bursts out laughing and says, “Me too!”

Spend some time with the girls and I wash dishes while they eat lunch. Then I eat lunch. I could hardly eat, partly because I felt disgusting and gluttonous from my 500 calorie snack (I looked it up) and partly because I felt nauseous and had a headache thinking about my test. I can’t think about it without my heart skipping a beat and my stomach flipping. I know I’ve got the basics and kicks down, and maybe even breaking the boards with no problem, but the SPARRING! Ernesto’s pairing me with 2 14-year-olds, one of which is Luis’ COUSIN and has competed before and fights like a guy! The other’s a white belt, but she’s taller and both are much faster than I am! I know, I know: I should stop being so hard on myself and think positive. But I’ve never actually fought anyone “for real” before! When I “spar” against Ernesto or Luis, they’re teaching me techniques and letting me kick them! I don’t feel prepared at all!

I got Alaethia ready and we picked up the boys from school. Got a summary of their day, helped Eenan with homework and then started getting ready for TKD. I seriously felt like barfing just thinking of going.

I get there and Ernesto’s on time LOL. I start stretching and Esther gets there with her son. (She’s the girl now taking class with me; Norma dropped out around November.) We start jogging, then take turns doing kicks. Then we take turns beating up Bob (the dummy LOL) or kickboxing with Ernesto. Luis arrives as we’re doing that and then Mary, Alaethia and the boys arrive. As we’re getting ready to put on the chest protectors and head gear, two dads show up with their kids. Great! An audience! I hate that >_<. Well we start sparring. I'm actually doing pretty good, getting 2, 3 kicks in and Esther's doing pretty good seeing as how it's her first time. Ernesto separates us, gives us some tips and gets after me for not using any of the techniques he showed me during Saturday's practice. So we start again. I'm blocking, kicking, sliding back, kicking and then I blocked a kick Esther was heading towards me WITH MY FIST! Her knee pushed my wrist into my arm joint. The same wrist that I've had that Ganglion Cyst in for the past 2 years. The same cyst that had JUST popped about 2 weeks ago after doing pushups in class. It popped again and I seriously thought I broke my wrist. I was just going to try and continue, but when I tried to close my first I said, "OW!" and clutched my fist to my chest. Ernesto came over to see what happened. He asked if I could move my fingers and I almost threw up and passed out when I saw my fingers just DANGLING there. I kept trying to make my brain make my fingers move but nothing happened! He started to massage pressure points along my arm and FINALLY, I began to feel my fingers again. It was the worst shooting pain from my finger tips, to my wrist, to my elbow. It was like hitting your funny bone really hard, times 10! I was so embarrassed on top of being in the worst pain in my life. I couldn't believe how stupidly I reacted; why didn't I just slide back and kick instead of trying to block?? I sat in complete agony while the boys were in class. I kept trying to move my fingers and pump my fist, but every little movement I made was awful. The boys' class was finally over and I drove to the ATM to get cash out, since Mary had paid for my test so I wouldn't have to drive so soon after my injury. We get to Aziz and as I slide out of the seat I feel a terrible pain in my knee. I had a HUGE welt! I hadnt even noticed I'd been hit there, or my shin LOL.

Possibly the most colorful awesome bruise I've ever had!

The pain in my wrist overrode everything else. I vaguely remember Esther kicking really low, so I’m sure a few more bruises will show up tomorrow!

Mary made sandwiches for the boys and Mom fed the girls. I had leftover nachos from yesterday, even though I shouldn’t have. But it was the lovely comfort food I needed right now. I can’t wait for Mario to get home. I need to be cuddled.

John made me feel a tad bit better when I was texting him about my ordeal and I tell him, “And that’s because we were just practicing! Imagine tomorrow when I fight a girl 14 years younger than me and a belt more advanced!” He replies, “You must fight to win, grasshoppa!” LMAO! That’s why I love my brudder!

I just hope I feel well enough to test tomorrow! And if I do, I hope I don’t come out injured any worse than I did today! Luis’ cousin, I’m told, mostly kicks to the head!! This type of stuff is what makes me want to just drop out and not continue. I hate sparring! It’s not like I’m ever going to compete. I don’t want to be a quitter, and I don’t want to seem weak, though. One thing’s for sure though: I’m never blocking with my fist at that angle ever again!

(You know, I’m glad I still have you, blog. Even though I neglect you, you’re always there for me when I need you. I feel tons better after getting all this off my chest!)

Need to Make Changes!

Jan. 19th – My head hurt that morning and my eyes were puffy from bawling my eyes out watching “My Sister’s Keeper” the night before with Mario. I’d already seen it at the movies during one of my Girl’s Day Out, and it was so incredibly sad I vowed never to see it again. Well, we’d watched “500 Days of Summer” before that and I was already feeling kinda down because who likes a somewhat happy ending to a movie? I want HAPPY ENDINGS! So we’re trying to figure out what else to watch and end up watching “My Sister’s Keeper” since Mario hadn’t seen it. Ugh. I cried even more that time! And to think they didn’t stick to the original ending! I would have shriveled up and died of pure sadness!

Mom came over and watched the girls while Mario, John and I went to Palmview. I dropped Mario off at Adan’s since he was going to try and get the truck he’s buying off of Jorge working. He has to replace a fender and a few other things before it’s ok to use.

John and I (against John’s will LOL) went to Target for a few things. Then we went shopping at Walmart. We got home, John went home we had lunch and then I picked up the boys.

The vintage Braveheart Lion I’d ordered for Alaethia for her birthday (she asked for that one, “the bunny, the kitty and the doggy”, but not even Mama has the kitty LOL!). Her lion’s probably nicer than mine. Ever since that day I’ve been itching to dig all my collections out and display them again, but Mario’s adamant about not putting my shelves back up.

I started cleaning the house that night. We were only having a small party for Alaethia since we’re budgeting (and since we have Emily’s 1st birthday coming up exactly one month after Alaethia’s!) so we were just going to invite closest family and friends. The only problem was we weren’t sure if it was going to be cold and ugly the way it usually is on Aly’s birthday. So I was to clean and organize the house, mainly the living room, dining room and kitchen in case we needed to fit everyone in here. I had my work cut out for me. One dining room corner had become somewhat of a storage corner, with Rubbermaid boxes stacked halfway up the wall. So it was my job to move some of them to the laundry room and get rid of everything else!

I’d made fideo and beans that night and smushed some up for Emily. She’d seen me licking my finger when I’d been eating and now she does whenever I pretend to do it LOL. (If you’re already a Friend/Family on Flickr you can see the video!)

After dinner and after the boys had already gone to bed, Mario and I went to the living room with the girls to watch TV. Alaethia had very neatly arranged her Care Bears and, so as not to disturb them, perched herself on the back of the sofa. We watched quietly and then I tell her, “Alaethia, get off the back of my sofa, please!”

She replies, “I can’t! My Care Bears are in the way!”

When I told her to get off the back of my sofa she said, "But my Care Bears are in the way!"

She’s so cute!

Mario and I talked about the Future Kitchen Remodel. Well, it took a few hours to actually talk about it. He kept asking me to come up with ideas and to draw out plans and when I’d bring something up or show him a picture he’d shoot down the idea. Rudely. I hate that about that man. He can’t just nicely say he doesn’t like it…he has to elaborate on how stupid an idea it is. Makes me so mad. Eventually (after I blogged about it…which immediately made me feel better. I really need to start using my site as my therapist again…), we talked about it and actually came into the kitchen, taped parts of the wall off where the counters and new walls would go (I’m visual) and I felt a little better about the whole thing.

Jan. 20th – I had a few errands to run like going to the ATM and then the bank for Mary. We were on a time crunch since I had to pick up the boys from school but we managed to go to Dollar Tree for a few birthday party supplies for Alaethia. We went Downtown to look for some Care Bears, at the same place I went to last year, but I didn’t find the small ones. I got 4 of the bigger ones and when we got home I realized she already had Cheer Bear. Oh well, that one can be Emily’s LOL.

Of course she wanted to hold the Care Bears all the way home. I had a feeling I wouldn’t get them back till her actual birthday LOL. Which was fine; they were going to be hers anyway, I just had to figure out how to “borrow” them from her to decorate them and hang them up the day of her party.

I started unloading all the stuff when we got home. Alaethia had already gotten comfortable with her “babies”, or Care Bears, while I was outside and got really upset when I tossed my bag onto the sofa. She screamed, “Mommy! Get your bags off the sofa, my Care Bears are watching TV!” She’s too cute!

I texted Luis, my TKD instructor, to ask if I could have class at 4 instead of 5 since Jorge, Mary, Andy, Noelia, Mario and I were going to the Leeann Womack/Joe Nichols benefit concert. He never texted back, so I figured he wasn’t going to be able to go at 4. Oh well. I was going to shower early, but I wasn’t going to class I figured I’d shower after I got the boys. Well, Luis texted back at 2:50 that I could got at 4, so I got in the shower, stuck my hair in a bun and picked up boys. I finished getting ready and went to class. He had me to the fitness part first and then practiced some kicks. I had a water break and then…sparring. It was officially the 3rd time I’ve sparred if you count my yellow to yellow-advanced test.

I did horribly. I probably annoyed him. I hate that I scream and pick my hands up all dainty-girl-like–so embarrassing. He kept telling me to stop doing that, to just slide back when he was about to strike, but I would slide back and then shut my eyes and bring my hands up LOL. I hope we practice more often. I don’t wanna suck again during my test! He did say I kick fast, I just have to work on the sliding part.

I told Luis that’s what makes me not want to continue with my belts; the sparring during the tests! I’ve literally spent nights tossing and turning worried about it! They think it’s hilarious though, stressing me out about sparring. They’re always making stuff up about how an upcoming tournament is mandatory and that I have to compete!

I got home, rinsed off all the sweat, blow-dried and flat-ironed my hair, and got dressed. The boys were separated ahead of time since they like to fight when I’m not around. I got the kids’ food ready and got Mom situated in the living room with the girls’ things. Mario got home and got dressed and then Mary, Mario and I took off to pick up Jorge.

We stopped by Taco Bell/Long John Silver’s in Pharr (yum) and we ate in the car before we got to Jagz, where they were having the concert. I used to like that place when it was a pizza buffet/rides place for kids but now it’s an event center. Very awkward layout for an event center; the ceilings are REALLY low.

The line was HUGE and we met up with Andy and Noelia. We joked all the way inside. We were too late to get seats and since I’m vertically challenged it wasn’t like I could see anything anywhere that we stood. So we just talked. A local band was playing first and we could hardly hear anything. Then when Joe Nichols came out his mike didn’t work, so he had everyone sing along to “Brokenheartsville”. He also sang, “Tequila Makes Her Clothes Fall Off” which is one of my favorites of his. We could hear Leeann Womack a little better and I may have gotten at least one good picture. She sang a few songs, but my faves are “I’m Gonna Love You Tonight” and “I Hope You Dance”. Ah, that last one was beautiful! I’ll always remember that song because it’s the one they played when Eenan graduated from Kindergarten *tear*.

Ah yes. This was also the day I started drinking sodas again and eating crap! Ugh!

Jan. 21st – I stayed up late downloading music and then spent like half the day (till noonish) exchanging music with John. I made one badass work out playlist and another one with my favorite songs. I meant to start on my cleaning/organizing as soon as I woke up but I can’t do anything when John visits. He keeps showing me videos, stories and makes me listen to music when he’s here, hence the reason I didn’t start cleaning till noon.

As I was walking into living room once Alaethia runs up to me with a little finger pressed against her lips and hisses, “Shhh! I just put my sons and daughters to sleep!” She had all her Care Bears lined up on the sofa again, all covered up with our throw blankets LOL. She’s hilarious.

It was very easy to get my work done with my iPod on. I got almost the whole house done, except for the dining room. Ugh. That was going to be a project all on its own!

I had to shower and get dressed to pick up the boys and then took then to Taekwondo. I think that was the night Luis said Jaylen would start going to class with the kids who needed help. Jaylen was NOT happy about that. He does everything correctly (you should see the kid’s Pandae (sp?) kick!), but he gets too overconfident and just half-asses (there’s no better way to put it LOL) his Horse Stance and the basics. So, until he improved on that he had to go to the other class. Which meant he’d be going on the evenings I go, right after my class. Eek!

I made shrimp Alfredo and garlic toast for dinner. Then I made some chocolate chip & peanut butter cup Tollhouse cookies Mom bought for me to make. And I had half a Pepsi. OMG. I seriously need to make some dietary changes. And well, I need to quit going to sleep late and waking up late. I’m not even making poor Mario breakfast these days! And I’m still stalling on starting the P90X workout again! Argh!