Today, Alex participated in his first Special Olympics track meet. What a day.
He was excited to go, but when we arrived, the chaos of a new place overwhelmed him a bit. By the time the coaches arrived with uniforms, he had no intention of changing his clothes. After some persuading, he put the uniform on (read: we gave him no choice but to wear it), but continued to insist that he wasn’t going to run. I had to escort him to the infield when his team entered the stadium (which, I’m fairly certain, is discouraged), and strongly suggested to him that he get in line with his friends (read: gave him no choice but to comply). They finally called his division and started lining kids up, so I have him a nudge and he got into line, and then I bolted up the field a bit.
For as much as he complained that he wanted to leave, the kid did a great job. He placed third in his division for the 50m dash, and fifth in his division for the softball throw.
I think the best part of the day, though, was seeing how proud he was of himself for his accomplishments. He and I went to the grocery store this evening, and he had to tell anyone who would listen that he “ran fast, got a medal”. His story was met with such enthusiasm from complete strangers, which just puffed him up even more. It was awesome.
Another meet is scheduled for Saturday, and I’m hoping he will be more cooperative at the beginning of the event. Probably a long shot, but a girl can dream, right?