I was named adult taekwon-do student of the year for 2012 at the school where I take lessons. It's an honor I didn't expect. My children congratulated me, and my teen even gave me a high five on my way back to my seat from accepting my award. But my cheering section ended there. My spouse didn't say a word to me - still hasn't. I have acquaintances, not friends, and no family, so picking up the telephone and sharing with someone isn't an option. That's why I'm saying it out loud here.
I have kept quiet about it for over a week because I feel badly for all the kids in the school who did not win awards, my own included. There are several kids I wish I could bestow this honor upon - kids who stepped up to the plate at the virtually the last minute when others backed out, kids who put their heart and soul into taekwon-do this year taking more than the normal two classes per week, kids who traveled and competed in tournaments throughout the year and represented our school well, kids who were slighted/judged unfairly at said tournaments and never complained, kids who volunteered and gave freely of their time to help out with summer camp and younger-aged classes, kids who very obviously worked hard outside of class to learn difficult patterns and kicks. They all deserve it far more than me.
Yet at the same time I realize I should be proud of myself. I toyed around with the idea of taking lessons for several months before I was brave enough to take the plunge. I am in my forties for crying out loud. This is something I really should have started as a child. I also am very timid about being up in front of other people. I don't like to look foolish. I don't like to be laughed at or made fun of. I get my feelings hurt very easily. I not only took lessons, but competed in tournaments as well. I did it afraid, with my heart pounding and palms sweating. But I did it ... and for that I congratulate myself.