Sunday, October 30, 2011
Because he was so big, coaches would drool when they saw him. They almost begged him to be on their teams. He always said yes because he is also very social. The lure of playing with other boys was his siren song. His job in basketball ended up being to just stand in front of the goal and hold his arms up. "Don't do anything else!"
Well, that's not fun so that didn't last long.
He became a little chubby. So, when another homeschool mom started talking swim team, I immediately signed him up. He could swim since he was 2, but this summer I thought it would be great for him to get out from in front of the video games, interact with other kids, clean up his stroke, and maybe lose a little baby fat. I did not care at all if he ever won a race.
Every morning, he got in the water, swam a few leisurely laps and played dolphin with another kid. Oh yeah, he would also walk the lane pretending to swim with his arms. So, they put him in the slow lane. Then every Saturday he would go to a swim meet, somewhere far away and leisurely swim a few laps while the other kids churned up the water. Needless to say he was always last. He was a huge frustration to his teammates, but Jake didn't even notice. He had a great time hanging out at the pool with his friends, running around, and enjoying snacks.
At one meet, he came up and asked me if I had any duct tape in my bag.
"No, why would I have duct tape?"
"My shoe broke and I want to fix it." It was $2 flip flop from Walmart. The glue came loose so the strap came off.
I said "Oh Jake, that's okay, I got those at Wal-Mart. I'll just get you some more when we leave. Just go barefoot for now." So, I took his shoe and pressed the strap back onto the sole. Hmmmmm...that worked. Hey, it might hold. So I didn't go to Wal-Mart for more flip flops.
They lasted 2 more meets.
Then....the last meet.
Jake is swimming and......wait.....what is he doing? Oh My Gosh!!! He's actually competing! All the other parents are cheering for him. I'm screaming. Another dad is looking at me and says "Did you SEE that??????" "YES!!!" and he won. It was greatness...
A little later, he asks me for tape. Of course I don't have tape. So, I say "Just don't worry about it, right now. I promise we'll stop after the meet." He walks away. I don't see him again for about 30 minutes and he has masking tape holding his shoe together. Its taped up like only a child can do. I laugh because I know he's been making the rounds asking other parents in a strange town if they have any tape. He must do this because his mother is negligent and doesn't carry tape around after she buys $2 shoes for her son and then makes him wear them even after he's told her they're dysfunctional.
So, I'm laughing at his redneckedness, but I'm also proud of his win so for a celebration lunch we stop at Chick-Fil-A, his choice. Now, we live out in the country, in a small town. We do not have a Chick-Fil-A. For this meet, we were in a big city. A city big enough for an indoor natatorium. My town is so small, I don't think the majority of people in it even know what the WORD natatorium is! That may sound mean. Come to my town and you'll see.
So, we're walking across the crowded parking lot on a Saturday afternoon. Him, in his taped up flip flops, and me carrying that very stylish handbag in the picture above. I bought it specifically for the summer. It was quite stylish in the day. Its a leather hobo bag with inlaid little jewels on either side of the handle. Its light in color and perfect for summer.
As we walk across the lot, Jake says to me very disdainfully..."We look like a couple of rednecks walking in here."
"WHAT??? Speak for yourself mr tape up man......How do you figure we look like rednecks? I, myself, am looking very stylish. Thank you very much."
"Well, my shoes have tape on them.... and you're carrying that PURSE!"
Does this make me a bad mom? I don't think so. It makes me laugh. Anything that makes me laugh can't be bad for my child....can it?
I just found that purse in my closet. That's what reminded me of that story......I think I'll start carrying it again. But, its fall so it probably WILL look rednecky...I think I will just keep it and carry it to his wedding.
That will make me laugh....so it must not be bad...right?