It's that time of year! What time, you ask?
If you remember the struggle from last season, you may be a bit surprised we're running again this year. I'm nothing if not consistent in my abuse of my kids. Here's the conversation we had a couple of weeks ago.
"Hey kids! Guess what starts this week?"
"What, Mom?" (They were excited at this point.)
"TRACK! Practices start on Thursday! Isn't that AWESOME?"
There was silence and then it started.
"I don't want to do track."
"I don't like track."
"Mo-om - that's on Fridays. That's when we play Wii."
Oh for crying out loud. Wii? Wii? Are you kidding me? You don't want to do track because you'll miss playing Wii for a couple of hours? For that reason alone, you will do track. And by the way - there is no track on Fridays, so your whining is for nothing.
So. We practice twice a week and had our first meet yesterday. In the rain. And the cold. The only thing missing was hail. I would have said uncle if there was hail. And stayed home and made my kids cocoa.
Instead we packed a cooler of food and put the cocoa in a thermos. I even made myself a latte to fortify myself for the event. And off we went to Ridgefield. In the rain. And the cold. Wait, I already said that. Sheesh, now I'm whining.
It was a club meet - not associated with a school - and each child pays $4 to participate in 3 events. Daniel didn't want to do anything. He wanted to hang out and wait for his friend Joey, who wasn't running either. This from my child who learned to love track last year. Daniel likes to warm up to new things. He doesn't jump in confidently like the other two. So I caved and said he could watch. Then all I heard from Matthew and Katie was, "How come Daniel doesn't have to run and we do?" To which I responded in a very mature and reasonable manner, "Are you the parent? Huh? Who's the mom? Are you questioning my parenting skills?" And they just looked at me like I was speaking Cambodian.
Anyway, we were cold and wet and had to stand in line to pay. After paying, I stood in line to get the kids' track shirts. Then Katie started crying. Let me tell you, nobody can cry like my girl. She doesn't wail and pitch a fit - she stands quietly, shoulders shaking with big silent tears rolling down her face. So I found myself caving, yet again. "OK, Katie. Fine. Sit in the stands."
In the meantime, Matthew was saving our seats in the stands. He likes to be comfortable so he was sitting on the comfy seat cushion. But he leaned back too far, lost his balance and hit his head on the bleacher behind him. In the process, he dumped over my latte. Then, he started crying. When I saw the puddle of former latte, narrowly missing my camera case, I wanted to cry too. Instead, I brought all three of my angel children's faces very close to mine and said, in a very sweet and loving way,
"I am ready to go home and leave all of you here. No more whining. No more crying. There is no crying in track."
Fortunately, my friend Davi was there and I sought some much-needed parenting advice. After that, I laid down the law to all three kids which was -
"If you don't participate it's gonna cost you. Cold, hard cash baby. You will be fined."
I still let Daniel slide because I'd made the deal with him before we went, but the other two suddenly had a strong desire to run track! Interesting, no? Matthew did turbo jav and Katie ran the 100m.
Katie patiently stood in the rain, waiting for her heat.
Nice form, huh? She's very precise about the way she holds her arms.
SWEET! Especially the smile . . .
Here are the sweet angels, with Davi's son, Liam. They had all eaten, finished their events and were drying out. There were full tummies and happy chatter and goofing off.
Don't you just love track meets?