Friday, March 9, 2012

February races

I love living in our city. Having lived here for 8 years now, we are quite settled and can't imagine being any where else at this point in our lives. It really is a wonderful little city to raise a family.

One of my favorite parts of our city is the emphasis they have on health in general, but particularly exercise. Being in the deep south, we have about 11 months out of the year that are outdoor-friendly. We have bike lanes throughout most parts of the city and can see runners along the sidewalks pretty much any time of the day. Having the propensity to sit, eat and gain weight pretty easily, I love the constant silent "push" to get outdoors and exercise.

February is a big month for us in these terms...I think in part because it is usually so nice that time of year (barring the thick pile of pollen on everything). The girls have participated in the 5 points of Life Kid's Marathon for the past 3 years, benefiting Life South Community Blood Bank for our area. The kids must log in 25 miles of running throughout the year (the girls log this through their elementary school's morning mile program), and then they finish the last 1.2 miles during this marathon event. It truly is a lot of fun! The school with the largest participating class wins $1000 for their school, and our elementary school has won this for the 7th straight year. Hats off to our P.E. coach for putting so much emphasis on morning mile and this race.
I let Abby run with her buddies since she is older and more experienced in this race, and I ran with Emma and one of her class friends, Corban. It was on that day that I realized how fast my middle-un was! She and Corban ran 1.2 miles in 10 minutes...beating quite a lot of the older kids. I was huffing and puffing by the time we got to the finish line, and those two looked like they could have run another mile.

The very next weekend, we had the Talbot Trot and Fitness Fair at our elementary school. This is one of my favorite yearly events at Talbot. The kids are sectioned by grade levels and then race completely around the school...a pretty long trek.

 Now, I knew from the previous week that Emma was fast, but I had no idea how fast until I saw her cross the finish line in first place for the kindergarten girls. It was one of those moments of complete pride...the kind where you have to work to hold back the tears. To see her succeed greatly in something that she tried so hard was an incredible feeling. To watch her look sheepish, almost embarrassed, as her name was called and she was awarded her medal and stood on the makeshift's a memory that still makes me smile.
The hard part has come with the fact that her older sister has always been in the top 10 in her class in this race but has never placed. I am not quite sure how to parent competitive jealousy, other than reassuring each kiddo that we all have our strengths and weaknesses and need to support each other regardless of victory or defeat. That's a tough one. As the kids have gotten older, the old adage of "parenting doesn't get easier, it just gets different" has been very true.
Parenting is hard. Rewarding, exhausting, exhilarating, and frustrating...but never easy. I am prayerful that I don't screw up these little humans.


Dani on March 17, 2012 at 3:06 PM said...

I completely get the prayerful that we don't screw up the kiddos. ;) It's a conversation that Gary and I have quiet often.

Way to go Emma!

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