Monday, November 8, 2010

Happy Mom Moments

This weekend we attended a Bobby Lawrence Karate tournament. The boys have taken karate for four years, even David and I did it for a couple years. Xander has competed at each of the two tournaments every years since they started. And for the first couple years, Charlie competed too.

Then he got tired of always losing ~ of sometimes being the only one in his division who didn't win anything at all. Participation ribbons seem like a good idea ~ except when your brother is bringing home trophies and all you have is a box full of silky tokens.

It takes a lot of courage to try again. Especially when you have so much proof that convinces you it's not going to be worth it. I was so proud that after a break from tournaments for a year, Charlie wanted to compete again. He's been showing more committment lately, and has been practicing more than he used to; but he still has a long way to go. I was so afraid he'd lose again, though, and any forward progression he's made would be lost. I prayed and prayed that he would have a positive experience.

When it came time for Charlie to perform, I held my breath. I wanted so much for him ~ and was so afraid for him.

He forgot most of his form, and instead of ending strong, like we'd practiced, he just kind of shrugged and left the ring.

He forgot most of his weapons form, just kind of threw his hands up in the air, and left the ring.

His last class, self-defense, was up. We'd worked hard on these, but we thought he'd be able to have Xander as his partner, and now he had to do it with a boy he didn't know and might not do the approach the same way Charlie'd practiced.

His turn came up. And Charlie did GREAT.

And, he won third place for self-defense!

Xan placed first in forms, weapons and self-defense for his division (he's in a different belt class than Charlie.)

So, here's my very proud mom moment. Believe it or not, it didn't end with Charlie finally winning a medal. As we were leaving, Charlie seemed sad. When I asked him what was wrong, he said he wished he'd given his medal to the boy who didn't win anything. There was one child there, one out of seven kids, who didn't win anything, who went home with only a participation ribbon. And Charlie knows exactly how that feels. He looked around for the boy, but he'd already left.
 Xander & Charlie

That was my proud mom moment. And it was a moment born out of all the pain Charlie has felt from so many losses. And then I thought, maybe losing isn't so bad after all.