This was a great read for me! I started my Aikido training almost 13 years ago and am still rocking the 5th kyu status. Between college, deployments, relocations and general bad luck with missing gradings I have almost given up on the quest for shodan. It's posts like these that help me remember what it's all about and that the journey is more important than the destination. Although, some day I do hope to retire my old thread bare piece of white cloth!
13 years and still a5th Kyu? Whats the matter with your teachers ? Regardles of whether you are available for tests or not, the fact is you are not a beginner. Your teachers should make allowances for your situation and grade you accordingly.By my reckoning if things remain the same , you might just get Dan grade after 52 years[13 years per grade ].Maybe the Dan grading would comprise of you doing irimi tenkan with a zimmer?Cheers, Joe.