Friday, May 12, 2017

Dying a little on the inside...loving a whole lot more.

So I am a runner, a fitness enthusiast and a mother.  Some times those three things play nicely together and other times I find physical conflict and internal conflict having them all happen at the same time.  I have coached a runner program for our kid's local elementary school for a few years now and my children have participated each year.  This year we moved to a new school and I am not sure if that made things more of a challenge for my daughter but it has not been easy.

follow in my footsteps
The running club is about nine weeks long and we meet two times a week.  I try my best to make this club fun, make sure there is a buddy or two for my girl to rack her laps up with, and occasionally may make up silly songs and cheers along the way.  Most of these kids start out with less than an interest in running.  Their parents know the benefits of running beyond physical and want to encourage their kids to start this passion at a young age.  I so much want my kids to have this spark lit as soon as possible.  By the end of the season they no longer are comparing how many bands they have to a friend...but how many bands they have to their own last run.  It makes my heart happy!

Two weeks into this daughter was not feeling it.  Every day after practice should we be crying and upset.  She was saying how she is missing time with her friends to do something she really didn't want to do to begin with.  I explained that I would be there every week coaching and she would have to be there with me either way.  I explained about her friends being there to run along side of her on the days she didn't have the energy or desire.  I would go in at night to give her a kiss goodnight and she would be so very upset.  She finally broke down and told me that she really doesn't want to do running club, but she know how much I love running so she does not want to let me down.

UGH!  Punch to the gut a million times in a row.  I was at a loss.  I felt like I failed!  It was a cross road and I didn't want her to take the place of a kid that truly wanted to be there.  I wanted to encourage and motivate and did not want to push and turn a deaf ear to her reasons.  She does not have to love running. She does not even have to like it.  She has been to many races to cheer and support, she sees the training that her parents put forth to propel themselves forward in our crazy adventures.  She knows all the smiles and love I have for my running community.  She doesn't want to do it.  It was a tough mommy moment for sure.

I brought her into my room that night a few weeks back and told her to give it one more week and if she really didn't want to do it, she could stop.  In a selfish attempt to keep her going, I told her that she did not have to do the 5k race at the end of the season if she didn't want to.  I asked her to try her best at each practice and if she just kept doing that, I would be very proud.  The mommy runner part of me broke a little bit.  The coach that tries to inspire these little feet felt like I let her down.  We were both kinda sad and a bit let down by each other.  We agreed to this plan and with race day two weeks away she is still not signed kills me but I am okay with that.

some days she is my running buddy
Being a mom is hard and lessons are learned and taught each day.  Molly and I both each taught each other something this season of running club.  We both had to bend a bit to make it work, we had to meet in the middle. I could have pushed her and had her truly hate it, or I could have let her fully give up and I would be so very sad.  So we compromised.  She has her days at club where she sticks with her speedy buddy and racks up the laps and she has days where she is more social and will run four in a row every once in a while.  But the part that I see when I call out one minute remaining and they have to cross the finish line in time to get an extra lap band...I see her push, I see her want to make it, I see her legs stretch and her face turn red by the end.  I see her want to do that for herself...not me.  I know it is in there, I know that runner athlete will come out soon,,.I know all that potential is locked up in there...I know it will emerge in good time...just like it did for me.  As Tom Petty says...waiting is the hardest part...but as a mom we do a lot of waiting and my gosh I love her so much...I'd wait forever.

Embrace the suck..choose you...happy mother's those monkeys.

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