• Jackie Bradbury

Roots and Branches

Oh boy, this is a weird philosophical one today, kids, but I'm in that sort of mood.


I've written before about how what I do is sort of a Mutt style, with many influences and sources.


Since I moved, I don't get to interact with my "roots" very often. My direct teacher, leaders in the styles that make up so much of what I do, my seniors in organizations I belong to... all the people who contributed to what kind of martial artist I am today.


Image by Jana McLain from Pixabay

I'm much, much further away from my roots than I've ever been. I definitely feel it - that sense of being untethered, of having my base in sight, but I'm no longer standing on it. It's even clearer when I do get a chance to see and reconnect with my roots - when I do, the pain of leaving it to go back to this place I've decided I want to be is hard and real.


Now that Mr. Chick and I are doing our own thing, like a branch that's split off from the main trunk of a tree. Our branch is new, and fragile, and maybe sprouting just a leaf or two.


But it is growing. It's slow, and it isn't easy, but it's growing.


If we do our job right, that little bitty branch will go from being barely a sprout to being big enough to sprout off our own branches, and they'll do the same, until we're big enough to be kind of a root ourselves.


And that's kind of an exciting prospect.


Someday, I'll be somebody else's roots. And when they move on from me - and they will - they'll have that same feeling I have now. And they'll have their tiny little branch, and it will grow, too.


I hope they'll learn, just as I am now, that there really isn't that big of a difference between roots and branches.

It's just time and effort, but ultimately, it's all the same.

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