My Shodo association has an “exhibition” (although it’s not a physical exhibition, just printed in-magazine) a few times a year, January being one of them. Any member is welcome to enter and my teacher encouraged me to give my best because if you win an award, it greatly increases your chances of grading-up the next time you attempt a ranking test. Well, I did indeed try very hard but never really produced anything that I personally felt very confident about. I can remember a few days at the classroom where my teacher told me to give it a break and go home. I’d put in enough time, apparently.
That being said, my teacher handed me a certificate last Sunday and said, “Congratulations.” Apparently I hadn’t even noticed that my work had been featured in this month’s issue, and I had won a special recognition. Part of me wants to be excited, but the more realistic part of me wants to believe that I just got it for merely participating. Make of it what you will, though, I got an award. The only thought I have personally, though, is that I can and will do better. There’s always more work to do, there’s always improvements to make. The road ahead is long.