As has happened so many times in the past, I've found unexpected inspiration in blogs.
Yesterday, my friend wrote a lovely post about blogging to preserve memories - not only about extraordinairy experiences, but of seemingly mundane details that have touched her heart. In doing so, she is leaving a permanent reminder of precious details that we as mothers so often forgot over time.
This served as a huge reminder for me as to why I started blogging in the first place...To capture precious memories of my children that have made my heart smile.
And that is why I blog today...
This past weekend, my son took me on an emotional roller coaster of sorts. We've recently joined a new fitness club with an indoor pool and outdoor lake (which requires children to pass a strenuous swim test to gain access to the deep end with all the "cool" dives, trampolines, etc.) On Saturday, Mr. B attempted his first test with vigor, but was thrown off when they required a slightly different stroke than he was used to.
The way your spirit was crushed sunk my heart. My worries lurched through my throat and my mind began racing with how I could help you remedy the situation.
I tried to remain patient, supportive and calm, for I've learned that your natural tendency in dealing with disappointment is to lash out and want to quit. And if I escalate my voice or appear mad, it only makes things worse. We talked (actually, I talked and you brooded) about how it's important not to doubt yourself or giveup so quickly. And that sometimes in order to accomplish a goal, you have to put in the time and practice diligently.
Despite my best motherly effort, you went to bed with the same look of defeat and disappointment on your face that you had when you exited the pool.
I did not sleep that well that night, as I tossed and turned with worry about how I could help coax you into trying again. Imagine my surprise, when you greeted me the next morning by saying that you'd thought about the situation and that you wanted to try again.
That's when my pride began...
We returned to the pool and I tried not to hover as you practiced a different swim stroke. You glided through the water with confidence and you were well on your way. My internal pride grew with each lap.
One. Two. Looking good.
Three. Four. Five. Oh my goodness...he's still going.
Six. Seven. Please don't stop, please don't stop...you are SO close.
Seven. Only one more lap. Just one more lap. You can do it.
Eight. You did it! Oh. My. Gosh. YOU DID IT!
Despite my elation, I had to remind myself that the laps were just the first part of the test. You still had to tread water for three minutes.
I knew you could physically do it as we had practiced it together just a few days before. But that was before you had swum so many laps.
As you made your way to the deep end, I asked if you wanted me to tread water with you. But, you confidently told me that you could do it without me. So I retreated to the shallow end and said a little prayer that you would be able to finish this last portion (for I did not know if you would be able to rebound from another crushing blow after being so close to accomplishing your goal.)
I tried not to watch, but I was secretly counting down the seconds in my mind.
Lord, please let him finish.
30 seconds more. It seemed like an eternity.
And then...then, you finished!
The pride. Oh, my goodness the pride that filled my heart was overwhelming. I can't remember the last time that I had such tremendous pride for you, my dear son. You conquered your fears. You tackled a problem and accomplished your goal. And you did it all on your own.
And I couldn't be prouder!