There’s what you want to do.
And what you ought.
There’s what you truly must do.
And what you’d better not.
–The Coconut Girl, “High on Chai”
Sometimes the candidates for life’s buckets of do’s and dont’s tumble neatly into place. Other times, they bonk the rim on the way in. Then there are the times when the “do’s” end up on the floor, in between, and nowhere at all. So you make your best guess and toss them in again.
Example: I wanted to take the Adult Team Sparring class in karate. More than that, I needed to. But I’d better not get hurt. Then oh fudge, I did.
Your job description is:
1. Hit the ground running when your eyes open in the morning, and don’t stop til you drop. Take care of family, write & draw, refinance house, monitor homework, plan for retirement.
2. Don’t hurt leg!
In the event you missed item 2 above, remember:
A. When you go to the ER, you need to bring something to read because you’ll want to pass the time and you mustn’t look at the bloody guy they just wheeled past you.
B. You need to count your blessings when the x-rays come back fine. Then you must be persistent with your doctor when the pain doesn’t go away, and gets worse at night.
C. You need to commend yourself for pushing your training to the next level, and for facing the mega dudes in the storm trooper sparring gear. And for getting back up when you got knocked to the ground, Matrix-style, supine on the mats. Twice, back-to-back. Also: you delivered some decent blitzing back fists, reverse punches, and ax-chops during the last few months of class. You helped fog up the glass.
D. You must practice what you preach. Find the shade of gray and course-correct. Ask your instructor if you can train to spar, but not actually spar because the ripple effects of getting hurt nearly flip your family’s ship.
E. Love your children as they try new things and find the limits of what they can do. None of us knows what we’re doing until we’re doing it, no matter how much we research, vet, and weigh.
F. Pretend that last bit doesn’t apply to airline pilots.