He's been testing for his next belts periodically over the past 2 years. His first test, he was crying and nervous before the test. Once testing starts, he's fine emotionally and concentrates on what he needs to do. The next test he was still upset before testing and cried a little. Eventually, it got down to just a pouty face. His temperament about testing has improved since he's gotten more used to it. This past June, he hit a roadblock.
It wasn't with his temperament this time around though. It was with his testing ability. He knew the techniques, he knew the form. He probably thought he knew it too well. During testing he went too fast. So fast that the Instructor grading his test couldn't tell what he was doing. At the end of testing, they present the belts, when he realized he wasn't going to get his next belt, he was upset and started crying. With some consoling from Mom, he got over it and was ready to test the next month.
Next month came and he was nervous. He had an additional month of testing and knew his forms and techniques better. At the beginning of the test, the class was told to do their forms fast. Unfortunately, Eli applied it to the entire testing period. This caused his stances to be high so the tester couldn't tell what stance he was in. Once the belt presentation came around, his eyes started to water and he knew he didn't pass. Again, he cried all the way home. He was upset and exhausted and Mom consoled him.
He skipped a month of testing because we went to Hannibal. This might've helped take the pressure off of him. September rolled around and it was time for his next test. This time, he wasn't nervous, he wasn't crying as he had been up to this point in every test. I talked with him before testing about doing his best. Doing everything with low stances and properly and not to go too fast. He seemed to accept the idea of doing his best as being the goal. Testing came and went without much issue. Belt presentation came around and as it got closer to Eli, the tears started welling up in his eyes because he wanted it so bad and had worked for 4 months for this test. He kept himself pretty well composed. And then, they called his name for his red stripe belt!
Eli and PKJN Ben Mitchell after his red stripe test
He was so relieved and happy to pass his test. On the way home, he formulated a plan to fake his Mom out. He put on his old belt and had me hide his new one. He came in the house and yelled "dang it". But he couldn't hide his smile. The jig was up and his Mom knew he had passed even though he was acting like he hadn't. Finally, he gave up the game and was happy to tell his Mom all about it. It'll be a few more months before his next test, but hopefully this experience will serve him well if he doesn't pass in the future. He has experience with it now. Hopefully, if it happens again, the disappointment will be easier to handle.