Two Years ago, my mother and I were shopping around the neighborhood, and we walked into a store front. It was really a Tae Kwon Do, "Dojang." I was amazed as I watched the younger kids, literally half my size, kicking and doing side-splits, but I didnt want to do it, eventhough my mother pleaded for me to try it. Master Lee convinced me to at least have a trial class, and I accepted. At first I hated it: I was Sore all over, I couldnt breathe, and I felt like an outsider with the other students. After a week had passed, my Father heard the news and forced me to go to another class, where I recieved my beginer uniform. This was the beginning of a whole new world.
I toss and turn in the covers, but every corner of my room is filled with sunlight.I struggle opening my eyes. I open my eyes, thinking, why is the sun so bright? I shut my eyes slowly. My eyelids turn orange as the light infiltrates my peace.
I open my eyes, move the covers, and feel a bombshell of freezing air hitting my once warm and snug body. I kick my feet around the bed and sit up, only to stand up and feel my knees quiver against each other.
I shove my hand on my eye, feeling my eyelashes on my eyelids. I open my mouth taking in a pound of air. I breathe out slowly. I glance at the mirror that is reflecting my white cotton tae kwon uniform with the black belt hanging by a hook next to it. I turn around walking towards it taking heavy breaths with each step. I look at the uniform smiling. I turn the handle down, heaving the cracks of the door, feeling my heart race but with no pulse! Sliding the door open, I hear the shuffling of paper falling on the floor. There it is a bright white envelope. I begin tearing up the side of the envelope with every rip sounding like the wild crowd chanting my Name "Samantha!" -RIP-"Samantha!"-RIP- I finally throw the side and I see a gold paper with inprinted designs. My Heart skipps a beat with every tug it takes to remove it from the enevelope. Boom... Boom... Boom.. Finally I become numb as I begin to read my name in the Olympic Colors and Font "Samantha Martinez" As I open the Letter I couldn't blink, breathe, move. In this dream, I have been selected as one of USA Olympic Team for Tae Kwon Do. In this dream, I am flying to London with my coach and team. It is a dream I want to realize.
I recieved my white belt a month after I started practicing. It was the happiest moment of my life. At the time the 2008 Beijing Olympics had begun, I watched Steven Lopez win the Olympic Medal for U.S.A. I fell in Love with the Sport and spoke with my Master about sparring with him for the first time. I was a yellow belt. It was an hour long battle, and I Lost.A Yellow can never beat a Black Belt. After the Battle I was physically dead, but the mere rush was more inviting than any other thing in the world. It has opened my eyes and I never want them shut!
Where I’m From (modeled after George Ella Lyons)
I am from the corner store at 164th Street
From the cheese doodles and $0.05 bubble gum (Bubbalicious)
I am from the United Martial Arts (Yes I can)
I am from the 5th belt out of ten (blue)
From the park filled with dinosaur bones.
I’m from lasagna and aroz con dulce
I’m from the Roundhouse and snap kicks
From the “no me diga!” and the “Ay Tana!”
I’m from the lady who was dressed with the sun and the moon on her feet and crowned with 12 stars.
With the rosary of the unborn
And the seven Hail Mary’s in the Lake of Tears
I’m from Olegaria and Colonel Martinez.
Lasagna con platanas and aroz blaco con “Guandules"
From the day I found his socks in drawer but he told me he was leaving.
The ring that was left on the counter.
The shelf filled with the medals behind my closet door
The nails that hold up the belts making a tae kwon do rainbow that lay over my bed.