Well, I tested last night. To generally summarize....
The feedback I received was very good and the things to work on were mainly involved in increasing my connection while deeper in the technique. It seems I have a tendency to pause at the end of an otherwise excellent blend and allow uke to recover too much of their balance before finishing the technique. After reviewing my notes from prior tests, it strikes me an issue (improved) that I have been working on all along with respect to dealing with my fear of injuring my partners. While a lot of that fear has been dealt with, there are some definite bad habits remaining from when it was more significant.
My teachers also appreciated that I have for the most part successfully managed to maintain a search for effectiveness without using overt muscle and that Aikido is also more than just effective technique to me.
For my part, I didn't really feel like I got to do the kind of preparation for this test I was intending or thought I'd do going into it. For a variety of reasons, life has been very full for me recently (new job, new relationship) and I've had to back off from my prior degree of commitment in order to balance the other things in my life. So, to me, my intensity of training is really down from last year... last year I aspired to train every day. This last six months or so, I've been lucky to get 15-20 days a month in. Still quite respectable, but it FEELS like I'm not training hard enough due to my former practice levels. Also, I got sick twice (flu, then strep), broke a toe, and gained 20 pounds.
I've managed to put off 10 of those 20, but my endurance was still too low and I ended up getting through the jiyu-waza and randori on the test through sheer will power and can't really remember much beyond the first technique in each one. I mainly concentrated on not falling down, trying to breathe, and moving. I was too weak to do anything else. One of my seniors (sandan) told me that I had already done my preparation last year with the daily training and many many seminars and that I should just focus on maintaining my training and attitude since circumstances prevented the preparation I desired.
Over all, I think I did ok. Mentally, I treated the test like I was training in a regular class. I do plan to try not to allow this sort of minimal preparation to occur for my shodan test. At least if I'm not struggling to stand due to lack of endurance I can actually do a little more.
[Edited by tarik on June 8, 2000 at 2:20pm]