“Arrgghhh! I can’t hit you!” I said frustrated as I fixed my obi, ” You are really good at defending yourself man, especially with your feet!”
It was our usual training session on the streets outside your dad’s house- biological daughter vs the adopted daughter… tall vs short…technique vs agility. “If I can’t touch you then I know no one can!…Ouis” I bowed, smiled and shook her hand. I accepted my defeat… again.
Years passed and our lives limited our communication to social media- the occasional birthday reminder, seasons greetings and the announcement of your daughter was the only time we contacted each other. Ping RIP… ping RIP.. ping RIP… wait what? my notifications were going crazy with your profile name. I tried calling everyone for days upon days- daddy, other training partners, even you to see if it just happened to be someone you really cared about- but no one answered. What the hell was going on?!!
One week later, one of our training partners finally stomachs himself to answer me. Before I could say a word: When she told him she was leaving him for good and taking their daughter, they started to fight. The neighbours said he then shouted, ‘You feel all yuh kung fu gun save you?’ Then pulled a sword (machette) and slit her throat… the police came just as it happened, they saw it. They put him in solitary confinement and he has been there ever since because he and the police know the kung fu master waiting for him”
My stomach then dropped. There was silence on the line for awhile. Then our training partner spoke again, ” She was to leave him every since. But she kept giving him chances. She would leave and go back, leave and go back, leave and go back saying, ‘He’s a changed guy.’ We tried, we really tried but she kept going back and now look what happen.”
One of my home countries is known for having the highest level of domestic abuse in the region. 1 out of every 3 women are subject to domestic abuse. In 2017, the police recorded 1100 reports of domestic abuse and 43 domestic murders with my sister being one. It played on me for awhile. How could this happen? She was untouchable! She was a black belt! She was a bad ass kicker! I started to question myself and ask what is the sense of learning self defense if it isn’t going to defend me? Look at my sister… I started to get depress because I role play myself in her shoes over and over again. Why didn’t you do this? Why didn’t you that? This should have worked and even that could have worked. What happened? In all my searching, I eventually found out the reason..She lacked self confidence.…