So I passed my Black Belt test.
Should I be awesome-fied? Hell yes! 5 and a half years of berating and punching and being chastised/slammed to the ground have all come to this. And all I’m going to do is keep on going on.
I really don’t feel any different; nothing – nada, nothing at all. Except for the fact that I’ve never felt more “true to self” than I have ever been in my life. Yes I have come a long way in Aikido, but the real victory for me is the long way that I have become as a person off the mat.
Yes, off the mat. I remember first joining Aikido in college to find out “what the hell this strange martial art is” out of pure curiosity. Took a 2 year hiatus to find work/a career and to join a fraternity my last year at university.
Both didn’t work out.
But I digress. It wasn’t my initial goal to be this far in Aikido – at the time I moved back home, I was in a rut; it wasn’t until some time had past that I realized that Aikido would change my life. So far it has not failed me. The only times that it “failed” me was when I got too cocky was too full of myself.
What I am now setting out to do is to build myself to the man that I am destined to be, not the ones that my parents (especially) want me to be. From here on out I am concentrating on who I am off the mat, because my goals in my life are becoming more important than ever.
My professional, personal, and emotional life are going to occupy the majority of my energies for the foreseeable future. I know this sounds like I’m putting Aikido on the back burner – but the way I see it, I’m just doing what NSS has been hammering in our heads this whole time:
“Aikido is meant to be taken back into your life to make it better.” (paraphrased)
First few things on my list: starting a career actually (and not just a job) and getting a place of my own. Now if you’ll all excuse me, my destiny awaits.