At our Academy, our first Kung Fu form is named the Single Step Form. You will regularly hear students and instructors reference:
“The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” ~ Lao Tzu
As parents and guardians, witnessing our children take first steps in their journey is often accompanied by emotions of joy, protectiveness, reluctance, and so on.
Whether a child is taking their first steps in life; taking their first step alone on the first day of school, or walking into the kwoon for their first class, first sparring experience, first grading, first competition, it is another step in letting go … letting grow.
We want our children to succeed, to be independent, to be happy, but let’s face it, in talking with other parents and guardians, I am not alone—letting go can be challenging.
I recall a discussion I had many years ago with Sigung Bob Schneider when Rebecca was in the Youth Program and April was in the Little Ninja Program. We were talking about Rebecca’s advancement and even though she had attended all her classes regularly, had learned her current form and had her time requirement filled Sigung said that Rebecca was not ready to advance at the upcoming grading and that I should trust his judgment.
Sigung knew what was best, and in hindsight Rebecca benefited from more time at that rank; she needed more time to build confidence and skill. It was another six months before Rebecca graded. Sigung was sensitive to my role as parent and he balanced it with the reminder that while I had my journey at Kung Fu the girls did too; their journeys separate from mine. That lesson has given and will continue to give me insight through many moments of letting go…letting grow.
During the upcoming months children will have many opportunities at WKFA. Gradings, special classes, in-house tournaments are on the agenda. At the Waterloo Kung-Fu Academy we are privileged to witness the Kung Fu journey of our children. We have the privilege of ongoing communication and information; to attend gradings and tournaments; to watch classes from the waiting room; and, Sifu David encourages open relationships with students and parents.
Whether a grading, a tournament, a first class in a new program, enjoy a moment for you too as your child benefits from many new experiences.