Pride and Joy

You know the phrase “My kids are my pride and joy?”

I’ve never used it. But today I felt it.

Sam’s karate studio is offering a deal where siblings can take classes for FREE for the entire month of July. Because we want to start Jack in karate, but aren’t sure if he’ll want to stick with the entire six-month term the studio makes you commit to, this is the perfect test. We don’t have to pay a thing to see if Jack will maintain interest and focus twice a week, week after week.

It’s too bad he wasn’t excited or anything:


Here’s the pride part: Sam jumped into big brother mode in a serious way. He showed Jack how to bow when he walked on and off the mat. He told Jack where to stand. He helped him stay in line. He led him everywhere he needed to be. Mid-class he waved to get my attention and then pointed at Jack and gave me a thumbs up. At the end of class he said, “Jack did an excellent job in class.”

I guess all of that, “We’re a team! Your brother is your friend! You have to help each other out!” paid off.

I probably would have burst into tears from the sheer pride I felt in Sam had I not held it in because even through the pride I realized how ridiculous tears at karate class would be.

The joy part? Look at that picture above again. And when they did their running drills and jumping jacks, the smile on his face was just that big. When they were punching targets, Jack’s joy seemed to be almost too much for his little body to hold in. Every time he punched, he did a little hop. Not great form, but hooray for enthusiasm.

He faded a little at the end of class.

(One of these things is not like the others…)

Jack spent the last few minutes of class prying one of the tape markers off the floor and moving it to a different spot. Because you can take Jack to a karate class, but you can’t make him not be Jack. And that’s okay. Great even.

My future blackbelts.

*****

Quinn was, of course, insanely jealous. He hurled all sorts of toddler-sized epithets at me. But I seem to have figured out how to make him happy. If I ask him to make his mad face for the camera, this is what I get:


You can tell he’s furious, right?

16 thoughts on “Pride and Joy

  1. I can’t even count the number of hours I’ve spent distracting toddlers during karate classes.

    With the added bonus that those places always smell like feet.

    xoxo, SG

  2. I love it when my kids help each other without my direction. I feel like all the time I spend telling them how lucky they are to have each other and how they are a team are really paying off. Your boys look VERY HAPPY! What a good day for you all!

  3. Wow. Jack looks so excited, and Sam looks like such the big brother in that first picture… what wonderful brotherly love you’ve taught, no, ingrained in them!

  4. Oh I would have totally teared up. I STILL do it, you just can’t help it when they make you proud like that.
    But I have always held it in too. Embarrassing.

    Some wonderful brotherly moments! :)

  5. Waaaay cool! Jack looks so excited; I can picture the little hop you described.

    And Quinn? Fierce mad face…NOT! LOL

    Indulge in those little tears of pride; you earned ‘em!

  6. I really relate to this! My oldest has some delays and I swear I feel ready to do cartwheels when we have one of those really great days. In some ways it makes the good stuff even more special. Even it is a hundred times more exhausting… Great pictures – such beautiful smiles.

  7. Those are the moments to live for!

    And, of course, having 2 black belts in our house, I could go on and on about the benefits of martial arts – especially for those on the spectrum!

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