I had a lovely family visit this last week, but it didn't allow much time for blogging. Or much else, to be honest, though I did make all relevant karate classes. Robbie's aunt, uncle and cousin got him a 3/4 guitar for his birthday, which he is enjoying (and which Mommy is sneaking off and practicing with a couple of time a day). Tomorrow is his actual 9th birthday. With any luck we'll have at least a couple of kids over and avoid the fiasco that was last year's party. Today I'm calling around to twist arms and make sure of that. It's embarassing, but better than the devastated kid.
I mentioned earlier that Sensei is working at the same company my husband works for. True, but not complete. He actually works for a contractor, but is trying to hire on direct. While he's angling for the change, he's working some odd hours - which means occassional last minute subbing in class. I got to teach last Friday, which was fun. I pulled out the gymnastics mats and tortured everybody by making them learn shoulder rolls. It seems to have been a good choice. Shoulder rolls are something that's demonstrably useful and that I can do easily (legacy of two summers of gymnastics camp), but that almost nobody in class has experience with. Even our ADHD boy settled down and got (a little) serious about trying to roll properly, and as a result almost everyone had actually managed a proper roll or two by the end of class, even though nobody could at the start. The relatively difficult move combined with my ability to do it also seemed to underline my authority, so I didn't have any problems with the mid-belts accepting me as their teacher for this class, which is sometimes a problem.
It's hard for a teenaged kid to accept someone of their own rank, even if older and more experienced, as an actual authority they should listen to. It will be interesting to see if I can cement my authority, such as it is, at this level, or if shifting to brown belt later will be required, or something else altogether. Right now I keep control of the class by a combination of psychology (such as teaching the shoulder rolls), and fear. I'm not too sure about the fear. I don't try to inspire it, and I've never hurt anyone in the dojo, but about half the kids are terrified of me in a fight. It's a weird feeling. Why on earth would they be more scared of me than of Sensei or of L, both of whom are far more dangerous fighters? Sensei opines that it's the spectre of a Mommy trying to hit them, but then shouldn't they be afraid of K too?
In other news, I did remember (or rather he remembered) to have Bill video me doing Seisan kata. He's downloaded it into his computer, and is trying to figure out how to format it so that I can either put it up here, or put it up on YouTube and link to it. So with any luck, I should have that up soon.