This is the post I have been waiting to write, if you have read the few entries I have made on this blog you will remeber the Joy I felt when Brainna ran her first two mile race with me. I know as parents We project onto our kids the things we want for them and sometimes it's the things We as kids probably wanted for ourselves.
I have posted a few pictures from Andrew's first wrestling season, it is also mine. I never wrestled in school, and had very limited exposure to contact sports. Mom thought I'd kill my siblings, maybe she was right, or maybe I'd have just been more confident sooner in life. I was very claustrophobic, even into my early adult life. I have since trained in many forms, of many things just to overcome the panic I felt as a small very skinny kid being held down. I remember the absolute terror that would put me in complete brain lock and make any thing intuitive to get free vanish from my mind. I always thought it would be nice for Andrew to either not have that fear or overcome it at an early age.
I have since Andrew was little hoped that he would Wrestle. My Nephew Wrestled for a few seasons in the "kid's club." and this was really Abby's first exposure to Wrestling, She was always so impressed with the way all the Dad's, would rally to encourage the little boys. The looks on the faces of the boys who were heart broken over the losses, and exuberant over the wins were so powerful. The reception and support the Boys received from all the parents was the same win or lose.
This season has had more than a few moments I thought that I would just pull the plug on the season and chalk it up to Andrew only being five years old and not mentally ready for the rigors of practice or the anguish of the meets. There have been practices he has cried the entire 90 minutes. Two weekends ago at the meet in Liberty Indiana, yes I drove an hour an fifteen minutes to a meet, Andrew lost all three matches by being pinned. Andrew cried at the beginning of each match was just never really there.
This past Sunday Andrew and I travelled to Wapakoneta to a meet. We left early and went to the Frisch's in Tipp-City, because the boy loves bacon. We had the breakfast bar and He ate probably a pound of bacon, a whole bunch of hashbrowns. We sat in the restaraunt and played all the games on the menu, we talked and just hung out for about an hour. We arrived at the gym early and I kicked my shoes off and went onto the mat with him. We went over the things we had done in practice the previouse week to make sure they were fresh in his head, and then we went to sit in the stands and wait for warm-ups. We had been sitting up there a few minutes when he looked at me and said "I'm going to win all three matches." I said that's great if you try really hard and do your best I'm sure you'll do great. I was happy, up until this point, mostly his self confidence had been low. We sat and talked to some of the other kids and parents for a few minutes. Andrew looked at me and said "Daddy I'm gonna pin all three boys." I am a realist by nature and Andrew had not pinned a boy yet this season. Although, we had worked on finishing moves all week, I reminded him to just do his best and it will work out. I of course did not tell him three pins seemed a bit of a lofty goal, I just encouraged and supported. I was a mess due to the times he has come off the mat crying and so upset over the losses. I was scared for him, afraid he had set his goal to high and would only end up crushed if he did not pin the first boy. Never underestimate your children, he pinned the first boy in 21 seconds.....I was coaching him to improve his position on the other boy's neck when the ref blew the whistle, I thought maybe the other boy was crying or had some issue, when the other Dad Coach with me said he pinned him. I was amazed, I missed the forest for the trees of his right arm, but he did it. The rest of the day went well, We ate slushies, and a gatorade, and other stuff just because he wanted it. At the end of the day Andrew had pinned all three of the boys he Wrestled, and he taught me a valuable lesson. That lesson is simple if you support and encourage your Children to dream big dreams and put in the work to accomplish those dreams they will accomplish incredible things.