we cheer them on.
We cheer them on, these children of ours.
We cheer them on through every step of life. Beginning with the the first time they roll over, to the first time they crawl and to those first steps they walk. We cheer them on as they learn, through every spelling test and every word they read.
Some activities involve our participation and some require our help.
What I learned last night, while I anxiously cheered the boys on at their first swim meet, is that some activities simply require us to cheer them on from the sidelines. And that's exactly what I did.
I cheered for Jonas who swam the backstroke, breast, freestyle and the relay. He made each stroke look effortless, I never knew a seven year old was capable of such grace in the water. And as he rose to the finish he rose with a smile. That smile, that moment right there, verified I made the right decision to sign him up for swim team. It was a commitment that scared me more than the boys. Five days a week makes me cringe, but each morning they rise and throw on their swimsuits with no questions asked.
Last night I cheered for Josh. My little Josh who asked, I am not kidding, twenty-five times when he would get his turn to swim. My Josh who just may be the smallest kid on the team. My Josh who has the biggest heart, the most enthusiasm and the best attitude. I cheered him on as he dove off the platform and swam the length of the pool. I wasn't even sure if he could swim that far, but he did. And he ended with a smile too.
I'm not sure why, but last night was an emotional night for me. Perhaps it's knowing how proud I am of my children, perhaps it's watching them grow into boyhood. Perhaps it's the time that slips between our fingers. Regardless, there were moments when I fought back tears. As I clapped and shouted while Josh swam to the end I fought back tears.
Perhaps tears of happiness.
In the two weeks the boys have been involved with swim team I have watched them grow and develop so much. Jonas just learned the breast stroke last week and swam it in last night's race (and was the first to touch the wall, proud mama moment). Joshua becomes stronger in the water each day. They have learned to work as a team, to celebrate as a team and share as a team. They have learned it's okay if you don't place first.
They have learned to just have fun.