I don’t normally dive too deeply into the personal experience side of this social networking thing, but yesterday was exceptional:
First, our son Atticus has been running track for the first time. His event is the 800 meter run (half mile, which is twice around the track). It’s been a cold, wet, and exceptionally blustery spring. So between running in less than ideal conditions and a couple of cancelled meets, his chance of running the 800 in under 3 minutes came down to the conference finals yesterday. He got a steady start, ran a smart first lap, lengthened his stride on the backstretch of the second lap, and kicked hard to the finish. And… he got himself a personal best 2:59 run. It was awesome.
Jane and I went from the track meet to Natalina’s soccer game. She’s playing for the Grandville JV, and their only loss this year was to Rockford on Monday. There was a rematch yesterday. Natalina plays an aggressive, physical, but clean style of soccer. On Monday, she had frustrated a Rockford player #9 by repeatedly winning the ball, so eventually #9 grabbed her by the neck and threw her down. #9 got a yellow card. At the rematch, Natalina again was winning the battles. Near the end of the first half, Natalina stole the ball from #9, knocking her down (cleanly) in the process. As #9 fell she tried to grab Natalina’s legs. Failing that, she kicked out both legs and tripped her. Again, #9 got a yellow card. (Should have been red, frankly, it was that blatantly obvious she intended to hurt.) Natalina never lost her temper, never whined, and continued to play hard. Absolute poise. It was awesome.
We left the soccer game early to get to the academic award ceremony for the Class of 2010. Elisira was participating as one of the top students in her class. That in and of itself was amazing to experience. But then it came time for the individual departments to give their awards. When Mr. Kennedy got up to present the English Department award, we had high hopes, but out of a class of 500, there’s a lot of competition — everybody takes English classes. Kennedy delivered a beautiful speech. (English teachers have excellent writing skills — go figure.) He built it up slowly and stayed gender neutral, but about halfway through it became obvious who the winner was. Jane and I were sitting behind the last row of students and we could hear them starting the share the answer: “Ellie! Ellie! Ellie!” And when Kennedy finally said her name, I just about burst. It was awesome.
I smelled so bad at the end of the evening with nervous, anxious, excited sweat I really should have been hosed off before Jane let me in the house. That was pretty disgusting. But otherwise it was a beautiful day.