Friday, January 11, 2008


Matty graduated from advanced blue belt into red belt in karate tonight. He also decided to stop going to karate after tonight(the dojo wasn't the very best and I had a lot of issues with the way they run their business, we'll probably all join a place that teaches Thaikwando in the fall). He really liked baseball last summer and is looking forward to it this year, and maybe trying football in the early fall.

Tonight, I was both embarrassed by him and so proud of him at the same time. See, when they finally receive their belts, the instructor asks them individual questions as he's putting on the belt. Such as: "Are you going to work really hard for your (next color) belt?", "Are you going to listen to your mom?"
To which the kid then says, "YES, SIR!!!" then each kid gives him a high five and they move on.

A thought occurred to me and I quickly tried to get Matty's attention. I mouthed to Matty, "Just say 'yes sir'!" because I saw that "Matty twinkle" in his eye and knew darn well what he was planning. I also knew that he was struggling as much as I was with what his answer would be...but after he saw what I was trying to get him to do, he looked pretty, darn confident in his decision.


So, the instructor called his name, told him to raise his arms up, and as he's putting on the belt he asks, "Matt, are you going to work really hard for your advanced belt?"

"NO! SIR!"

"Are you going to work really hard for your black belt...someday?"

"NO! SIR!"

What could I do? It's a small room with a ton of people in it, probably all thinking how disrespectful this kid is or that maybe he has "behavioral problems"? But, I just smiled (after I kind of cringed) knowing the truth behind his answer.

Matty will NOT lie. He will not say he's going to do something if he means not to do it. He will NOT say something just to appease everyone (even very publicly) if it is not the 100 percent truth.

(Oh, I forgot that before we even went tonight, we were discussing whether or not he'd continue with this place and he told me the reasons he didn't want to. One was that he was concerned that it was too much money. Two was that he didn't like the fact that the owner/instructor didn't teach them very much and he relied on his student/instructors too much. Three was that he thought it was appalling that the owner had a framed dollar in his office. I explained that that's just what new business owners do, that it was kind of a tradition to frame your "first dollar" but the more I explained it, the stupider it sounded and I realized that I have an very observant son. I knew (just by knowing him well) that he thought that that was a kind of blasphemy or "money worship" of some sort. I don't lecture or talk about that kind of stuff so I was surprised that he even thought of that!)

That's Matty. Oh, two more things about this goofy son of mine...After karate, we went to Papa Murphy's to pick some stuff up for supper. I went in by myself (Weazy and Matty were in the van) and I came out with arms full. Matthew jumped out of his seat and leaned into the driver's seat and asked, "What can I help you with, Mom?". It struck me that he NEVER forgets or misses an opportunity to help someone when they need it. I told him that. I told him how happy and proud I was that, when he sees someone in need, he doesn't EVER hesitate to help that person and that that was a quality that most people DO NOT have (especially so young, he's had it forever). He said, "Sure they do, everyone does that, right?!". And that's what he really thinks.

Weazy helped, too, but only after seeing Matty's example. She's been doing that a lot lately, too. She also sat and counted the cinnamon rolls that I got for breakfast tomorrow morning and noticed that there was one extra roll than person in our family. I joked to her, "Yeah, that's for me because I'm a 'two-fer'! I have a whole, extra person inside me right now, so I get TWO of everything!" She and Matty sat and thought about that for a second and Matty blurts out:

"Hey, Mom...AND you have TWO hearts inside your body right now!"

I love that kid.