by Ed Boller
Blue Belt Essay
Looking back at the person I was 1 ½ years ago I am forced to remember a person who was just surviving in his life. Being a fireman who on his days off cares for 3 children I was struggling to find time to complete my daily chores; never mind finding time to properly nurture my spiritual, physical, and mental needs. It was not until I decided to walk through the dojang doors that I was given a second chance to put all of these things in balance. Taekwondo has given me a place where I can meditate, workout and use my mind to better myself and the lives of the people around me.
|Buddha at Golgulsa Temple|
I have always considered myself a spiritual person. There was even a time in my life when I considered being a priest. When I moved away from the town that I grew up and had established roots and moved to Warwick I found myself without a spiritual home. I found that meeting new people and making new friends can be difficult as an adult. Finding Chosun Taekwondo Academy has given me a place to go where I feel accepted for who I am. Even though everyone that trains does not follow the same religion I have found that the time we spend meditating together brings us all together with the common purpose of relaxing the mind, focusing on our breath and the life force within us. I can honestly say that nothing has given me more peace in the wake of my mothers death than this time we spend. In all of the years I spent learning prayers I have never experienced a greater sense of peace. I often meditate picturing my mother’s loving face hovering over me and encouraging me the way that she did when she was well. I thank you so much for this gift.
The physical benefits of Taekwondo are extremely palpable in my life as a fireman. I find myself getting injured less because of my increased flexibility. I have never been so self aware of my body. I feel confident in placing punches and kicks inches away from the target areas. My core strength has improved greatly from throwing kicks and punches. I also feel that I have more energy after practicing Taekwondo to tackle life’s challenges.
I am more mentally acute then I have been in a long time. I find myself more confident than I have been in years. Knowing that if a situation arises that I have the know how to defend myself and others is empowering. The memorization of techniques and poomsae has improved my memory.
All of these things combined has made me into a better person, better husband, better father, and a better fireman.