*This event actually took place a few weeks ago...but it is such a cute story...that I had to make sure it was posted.*
Ty man has a "Field Day" at the end of each school year. It is a day full of fun and activities for the kids and it ends with a race. Depending on what grade you are in...you run a 1/2 mile or full mile. Ty reminded me of the "BIG race" a few weeks before his field day. He asked me if he HAD to run it. I asked him why he wouldn't want to run and he explained to me that he knew that he was not a good runner...and that the other kids in his class were a lot faster than he was. He said that his gym teacher told the class that they didn't have to run it if they didn't want to. I thought a few seconds before I responded to him...knowing that his momma is also not a good runner...even though I am working on it. I told him that he could do whatever he wanted...but I would practice with him if he chose to run it. I also told him that sometimes just finishing a race is a great accomplishment...even if you don't win (which sounded like a great "mom" thing to say) He still wasn't sure...so I told him that we would just practice a few times and he could see what he wanted to do. So...we ran...a little here and there...every few days. When he came home from school a week later he let me know that he had signed up for the race. He was still nervous...but he wanted to try. I told him that was all he needed to do and that I was very proud of him. I also promised him that I would be there to watch him run and cheer him on...the only thing that I didn't realize was that because of a make-up day (due to too many snow days) Field Day was NOT going to be on Friday (my day off from work) It was going to be on Tuesday (my full day of work). Uh-oh!! I asked my boss if I could leave early and he said that I should be able to...we just had to get a few things done for a project I was working on. I called to check in at the school office a few times that day to see if the races were still on schedule...hoping that they might be a little behind...but they were right on time. I rushed through my work and left a little later that I had wanted to. I raced to the school...and quickly walked to the back field. I could see his class getting ready at the starting line. I started to run to get over to him so that I could let him know I was there. I am sure I was a sight to see as I was trying to run...in heels...in a dress..while waving to him...and yelling his name. I was almost to him when the gym teacher blew the whistle and they were off. He hadn't seen me. I was determined to let him know that I was there...so I kept running straight through the field...hoping to catch up with him after he rounded the corner and started to the back field. As I was running I saw that he was second to last in his group and he looked like he was fading fast...very early in the race. (Yes...I know that this all sounds like a dramatic scene from a movie...but I promise that it actually happened this way...I have witnesses who saw me running through the field to catch him...and one of the other moms actually ran out there with me) I made it to the other side just as he was approaching. I yelled out, "Hey Boo...I made it...I'm here...you can do it...keep going!!" The look on his face was priceless. He had the biggest smile. As he passed me he said, "Don't worry mom...I got this." I saw him run down the hill picking up speed as he went. I watched him until he was out of sight...then I headed for the finish line. The first few kids came in and all the parents, teachers, and other students clapped. I waited. A few more kiddos came through...and I realized that my heart was beating fast...I was nervous wreck as I waited to see his little face come up the hill. I knew he was second to last...so I wasn't expecting to see him quite yet. But...then I saw a his bright red shirt...and he wasn't second to last...he was in the first half of his class. I yelled, "Keep going Ty...you can do it!" I was so thankful that I was wearing my big sunglasses at this point...because I totally teared up. (Yes...I am that mom who can cry so easily when it comes to my babes) He kept running up the hill and he crossed the finish line. I breathed a sigh of relief as I made my way to him and gave him the biggest hug. I told him that I was SO proud of him and I asked him how he had passed so many kids. He was a little out of breath (and I am sure he was exaggerating being out of breath just a little for affect :)!!) He said, "After I saw you and I knew you were here...I just kept telling myself...Don't stop...do this for mom...she will be so proud!" I started to tear up a little again as I picked him up and said, "I am proud. SO proud Boo...more proud than you could ever know. You did it...you finished...and not only that...you finished in the first half of your race!" I set him down and looked at his big blue eyes and his sweaty blond hair...my little man had done a great job and I was a proud momma.
I asked his teacher if I could sign him out early...she said that was fine (a lot of the other parents were grabbing their kiddos too) We walked hand-in-hand to the car and he told me all about passing some of the kids and jumping to touch the leaves on the tree he ran around...and I listened as though I hadn't just heard him tell me all about it only a few minutes ago. We got in the car and headed to McDonald's for a victory ice cream cone. As I looked in the rear-view mirror at him I realized that this would be the first of many accomplishments for my Ty man. I started thinking about all he was going to do in the years to come...but then I stopped myself. I wanted to remember this moment...with my 7 year old guy...licking an ice cream cone...a little dirty and sweaty from the days events...with his big blue eyes looking back at me in the mirror...and a big smile on his face. This moment was perfect.