Re: D-Day of Sorts
The thing that really got me about recieving shodan was the expectations placed upon that title by the juniors in the club and what the general public thought about a "black belt" in martial arts.
All of a sudden I felt the weight of responsibility of representing the club. Kyu grades were emulating my techniques and I had to make sure to show correct protocol in the club at all times. For me this meant trying to perform every technique well so that others looking on were gaining good instruction. Even when your are not teaching, you are teaching. Someone is always watching.
As for Joe Bloggs public. I try not to mention that I have a black belt unless specifically asked. It seems to bring up some strange ideas in people.
In saying all that, enjoy where you are and where you need to go next.