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I was soooo happy to get my black belt. It's not even that I get more than fairly average grades most times when I grade but I'm just enormously glad I got this far at all, and I just feel it's also so much of a team effort. Without the long suffering patience of my sensei, the assistant instructors and my sempai, and anyone who would practice would me, I would never have made it this far. So I'm just very very grateful to them all.
I found out recently also that my friend has enrolled his two kids into the children's class and the younger one has down's syndrome. She stubbornly decided 10 mins into the class that she didn't want to do it and sat on the sidelines. I think she'll come around and come to really enjoy it but it'll take her a while to adjust emotionally although I doubt she'll have a problem physically as she is a very strong little girl. It's one thing I also really appreciate about my sensei that he'll take on so special needs people or people who lack confidence or who may have other physical problems. And it's amazing how far they can go with that kind of support.