Funny that Little Man has given me a writing assignment coinciding with a long dry spell of writing inspiration. Nothing like an almost 9 year old about to become a black belt, kicking my ass into writing shape (he'll get a kick out seeing the word "ass" here). Perhaps good enough for a blog post. He'll be the judge and you'll know if you are reading.
The back-story - Little Man, as most of you who know him or of him, has been doing Tae Kwon Do since he was 5. More than just going you can say, he's made the place our second home, going an average of 4 times a week diligently and of his own free will. He's always shown good focus and a need to perfect form and it shows as he's progressed seamlessly up the belt ladder in minimum time. Thirteen belts hang on his wall with one remaining as the ultimate goal within reach in just hours from now. One of the obstacles, besides the obvious upcoming physical test was having had to write an essay about what TKD means to him. Not a simple task for a 3rd grader (and maybe he'll let me post his own words here too). Anyway, maybe influenced by this or maybe as punishment for this, but our Little Man wishes no gift for his big achievement, but rather that each one of us (Orit and I) write an essay of our own. A letter, to him, about how proud we are of him and what it means to us. Payback by our altruistic little smart-ass (another "ass" to make him smile) kid, that is willing to give up gifts for a boost to the ego and a pad on the back. We all recognize that as long-term thinking. The stuff of a leader. And bless him for it, he shall be. For that I take my hat off, give myself a slight pad on the back and proclaim out loud my absolute pride in his whole essence and being. This one achievement of reaching a goal set out at the age of 5 when he discovered his focus to become a black belt is but a small part of him at the now seasoned age of 8.6. There is so much more to this Little Man. But that's the homework he's assigned me so that's the subject of my words...
And here I must stop as per his request. I read it to him just before bed tonight. It took him but a second to decide that the introduction to this point is for all your eyes. The letter I subsequently wrote him as my "homework" from that point, he chose to keep private for himself. Then he walked up and gave me the kind of hug the moment required. What else can I say, that kid is smarter than I'll ever be.
In the morning it's black belt time.