I am so proud of my students.
I witnessed my 10 year old student get knocked down on her first tournament, clearly emotional from the immensity of her finals match, bravely get back up and continue fighting.
I got to see my 14 year old student, who already won his bracket, fight an exhibition match against a very strong and aggressive opponent, where he even felt like the result was determined. In spite of how good the other person was, and that he already won his match, he still chose to fight for the experience. He even got back kicked in the face really hard, took it like a champ, and still fought. What courage and strength!
I got to see my 15 year old yellow belt defeat a red belt and a black stripe to win gold in his bracket. He made adjustments as he fought, and fought technical and beautiful matches.
I got to see my 17 year old yellow belt fight a very strong fighter, lose, and feeling a little sad, still take on an additional match and then go on to win.
Though we did amazing, I couldn't care less about the results. I am so glad to have seen such strong acts of will, determination, courage, and poise from my students. I am incredibly proud and blessed to be an instructor and coach to them. I could not ask for better students.
Thank you parents for your trust and support. Thank you students for your courage, hard work, and determination even in the face of pressure, uncertainty, and struggle. Thank you team members for showing up to coach, film, and support the team. Thank you friends for coming to support. You guys all make life worth living.