Saturday, September 29, 2007

Twelve rounds

I'm not a fan of boxing. Just can't find anything aesthetically pleasing about the sport. Blood and sweat and funny looking shoes that wouldn't match any of my clothes.

I'm more of a martial arts type of guy. Kung-fu, Aikido, etc. Not karate. Too much like boxing. Straight lines, forward thrusts, the use of brute force.

I prefer the "dance" and circular movements of Aikido, where you use your opponent's aggression against them.

When Silvi throws a fit or misbehaves, I sometimes tell Annie, "Think of the movements in Aikido. Instead of using a 'No' statement, redirect Silvi's aggression in another direction."

Annie prefers the straight-forward upper-cut to the jaw.

Once I pick myself up off the floor, I stumble away and try to figure out where I went wrong.

Annie and I have been going a few rounds these last four weeks since Ian's birth and diagnosis. You can only squeeze a grape so hard before it's skin yields to the pressure and you have mess on your hands. (obscure reference to The Karate Kid.)

She jabs and I counter with a Koshi Nagi throw. I thrust with a Tsuki strike and am flattened by a surprise spinning round-kick. "Foul!" I yell in protest. "You can't do that!"

But all past rules have changed: We are battling in a new arena, and we can't seem to find the rulebook.

Exhausted and bruised, we do not retreat to our separate corners. Instead, we call a truce. It is a draw. There are no winners here.

And then we hear Ian cry in the background, and realize we face a bigger battle, one that can only be won together.

5 comments:

Aunt Bonnie said...

Same Old Rule Book, Tommy. Try
I Corinthians 13--again. And again. And again.....
Not that I am a philosopher or anything like that, of course.
Love and prayers.

Leah said...

Isn't it funny how the dynamics change when you have kids? That's when all those skills we were supposed to have learned as kids (like sharing, cooperating, and problem solving) all take on a whole new meaning! The funny part is it's our spouse we have to practice them with! LOL

Kim Ayres said...

I'm a Tai Chi man myself.

One of the truths Maggie and I have learned over the years is together we can cope with anything. Where it all falls apart is when we cut ourselves off fron the other one. This can happen just through circumstances which require us both to be focused in different directions, or it can be because we are trying to protect the other one from our own fears, worries and griefs. But that separation always leads to a building of tension, that is only ever dissolved once we sit down and talk and take the time to meld together again.

In amongst all that is going on it is vital that you find some real time for just you and Annie. However, tricky that might seem, it is worth the effort a hundredfold.

Tom P. said...

Happy 1 month birthday to Ian. And welcome to Holland to Tom and Annie and Silvi.

Tom said...

Aunt Bonnie: I've been more into Psalm 77:1-10 these past few weeks, waiting for the day when I can move on to the rest of the chapter, but suppose a refresher course on love might come in handy, too. Thanks.

Leah: It's like learning everything all over again.

Kim: Thanks for the reminder, my Scottish, er, British friend. That's definitely something that has been lacking. Perhaps a movie night is in order for Annie and me. Appreciate you being so real with me.

Tom P: Thanks, and I thought there would be more tulips.