From Helpless ---> To Fearless... Parents Take Action... Responds to Bullying

Hi Everyone! (Parents & Kids),

The feeling of HELPLESSNESS is the worst feeling ever.  When you do not know what to do, you are frozen with FEAR.  

Kids are being bullied every day... Will your kids be strong enough to respond to this inappropriate behavior?

I want to share another story with you that occurred over 23 years ago.  It is the story of how my little sister Kelly was introduced to the martial arts.

It was the last day of school, and summer was about to begin.  We waited at home for my little sister Kelly (age 6) to arrive home on the bus.

The school bus stop is right in front of our house.   

Kelly gets off of the schools bus and comes running into the house.  Her eyes full of tears, and she is holding her tummy area with her hands.

My mom very concerned asks, "What's wrong Kelly?"

Kelly replies, "A boy kicked me in the tummy on the school bus."

Mom's lips clenched, her eyes became very narrow with a sharp V formation in the middle of her eyebrow, and her skin color literally turned red...you could see the heat emitting from her.

Mom was FURIOUS!

She was furious for many reasons:

Her daughter was hurt.

She wasn't able to stop the kid who kicked Kelly because she wasn't there.

She knew Kelly didn't have the skills needed to protect herself.

She felt helpless.

In the following days to come, I remember my parents discussing ways on how this bullying could be stopped.

They both went to the school office, and reported the incident...

then they recognized that Kelly needed to learn the necessary skills to defend herself, and to build her self-confidence...She needed to become stronger.

Both of my parents agreed... it was equally important for Kelly to learn these skills as it was to learn to read, write and do arithmetic.

They found a special program held at the local youth center.  It was a Youth Karate program.

The Karate program focused on making its participants STRONGER - in Confidence, Fitness, and Character.

Over the course of the summer, Kelly learned to defend against punches, kicks, and grabs.  However, through learning those techniques,  she increased her self-confidence, because she knew how to physically defend herself against those attacks, and that she was not helpless any longer.

She increased her physical fitness level, because it was a workout... she gained more control over her balance, coordination, and conditioning.

But the most important lesson she learned was respect for herself...Kelly believed in herself, she was important.

All this occurred in about four months of the program.  

The Bully incident occurred in the month of June.  By November, Kelly decided to enter a sport Karate Tournament, just for fun of it.  

She participated in the Sparring event which is like a game of tag where the participants use their blocks punches and kicks to tag their opponent on specified target areas.  The first person to make the tag with good technique is awarded a point... and the one who gets to three points first wins the match.

Kelly made it to the finals in her beginner level division for her age 6 group.  At the end of her finals match, of which she had WON... Kelly came running back to Mom and Dad and said, "I just beat the boy who kicked me in the tummy on the bus."  

It was similar story line of a popular hit movie... a Real Life version of the "Karate Kid."

Her eyes were wide and sparkling, her smile was very big, and she was standing tall and very proud of herself.  Kelly overcame a huge obstacle, and her demeanor says it all... 

Kelly had become STRONGER! 

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Let's help our Kids to become STRONGER through sharing of our stories on how we handled tough situations... they can learn from our experiences.  

Let's give them the physical self-defense training they need so the can be prepared for those worse-case scenarios... it will give them options instead of the feeling of helplessness.

Let's teach them to respect themselves so they can treat others as they would themselves.

We can not control how others behave, but we can control our response... so let's help our kids to become STRONGER before the bullying starts.

Remember to: Radiate Confidence, Exhibit Courage, & Exemplify Character.

Live Fearless!

Mr. Jerome Nojima

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