Indigo is a good example of a bad martial arts student.
- Self Control? Nope.
- Discipline? Nope.
- Courtesy? Only when she feels you are being courteous.
Yes, Indigo is only 6 yrs old (turns 7 in a month). But, she is way too smart for her own good. And, I don’t just say that because she’s my own kid. Indigo is doing 2nd grade math – at the start of 1st grade. She has her own math program in her class. While other kids are learning about adding two numbers together – she’s doing double digit subtraction. Reading-wise, Indigo is reading at about the same level as her math. Writing? She’s a pretty advanced 1st grader here too.
The challenge with Indigo is the fact she is so smart – but she’s 6. Her social skills are 6. So, take a kid who is into the “are too” space socially and combine it with her vocabulary – and you have quite the conundrum.
Me: Pick up the shoes you flung around as you were finding your shoes.
Indigo: Why do I always have to put away the shoes? DJ never has to put away the shoes. And look at the shoes. These are Po’s shoes, and DJ’s shoes, and more Po’s shoes, and DJ’s shoes. That’s why I can’t find my shoes – it’s because no one puts their shoes away. But, I have to put all of the shoes away. I always have to do it. DJ never has to do it. Po never has to do it. Always me. And then I can’t find my shoes, so I have to dig through the shoes, and find them. And then I get into trouble, and then I have to put the shoes away – and all I’m doing is what you told me to do which is get my shoes one……..
She can go one a lot longer……It is usually at this point I have to threaten her with punishment if she doesn’t shut up.
Damn that Preschool Teacher that taught her to use her words!
So the taekwondo test went as poorly as I thought it would. She didn’t know pretty much any of the stuff….none of it….despite the last three months of lessons – AND- her sister trying to help her learn it.
As people snickered at her clear and obvious lack of knowing anything, Indigo was also amused. Kind of became a “look at how badly I’m doing” sort of moment. Meanwhile, we are just shaking our heads. For us, it was further confirmation that this was not working for her.
This is where I should pause and mention that I don’t care about belts. I don’t care about how far she goes. I care about improvement. I care that she’s learning something. I care that she cares about what she is doing and enjoys the sport, if you will. I mean, “if you aren’t enjoying, why are you doing it” was the mantra I was raised with and one I still believe. And, if you are going to try, do your best.
Watching my daughter crash and burn during her test was not embarrassing for me. It was showing me, once again, the this is not her thing. And, knowing how much I pay for these classes each month. Knowing how much time I spend at the dojang – I want her to be learning and enjoying it.
After the test, when we confirmed for her that she did not pass, she was ready to argue with us. We quickly had to squash the “but DJ” talk. This was about Indigo. Did she try her hardest? She claims she did. Finally, after getting about 20 minutes of “why this isn’t my fault”, I told her she was done. Monday, they would talk to the Master of the school, and we would tell him she was going to give something else a try.
On Monday, Garbanzo and Indigo went to talk to him. He and his assistant agreed this was not her thing. Part of me believes this is the Master’s fault as well given he pushed her to go on versus making sure she had the basics, but that point is moot.
Now we are talking about what she wants to do instead. She wants to do swimming lessons. That’s a no brainer really. I mean, yes, she should learn to swim. Can’t have a kid drown – not that she would. She loves water and floats well. But, she wants to get better.
If not swimming, I know there is a dance class for her age group at the local dance studio. She seems really interested, and Derek says the instructor is awesome. That’s another possibility. Plus, there is still soccer which she is enjoying. I’m not expecting her to figure it all out (and we aren’t doing all of these things). I’m just happy we are all going to stop pretending that taekwondo is her thing.
And, if worse comes to worse, I’ll enroll her in a speech class. I think she could give lessons on filibusterer techniques to Senators.