You might have read my post yesterday, it’s fair to say that Sports Day is not a date on the calendar that’s looked forward to with any great fondness. Monkey doesn’t like it, in fact that’s quite an understatement. Joining in with Sports Day just doesn’t happen here. We woke up yesterday, it wasn’t raining, Sports Day wouldn’t be postponed again. There were tears and tantrums, Monkey did not want to go to school. He’d been poorly the day before and I’m not sure whether part of it was anxiety about this day.
I’d pre warned his teacher of his feelings a couple of weeks ago, and she was straight on the case yesterday when we got to school. Don’t worry, I’ve got a plan, but if he really doesn’t want to be joining in with Sports Day are you ok with that? Hell yes, of course I’d love him to join in with his friends, but I’m not a pushy Mum, if he doesn’t take part I’d only be disappointed for him.
So 10.30am approached and I headed to school with our picnic lunch and my camping chair. I had no expectations, I was just looking forward to having lunch with him and seeing his friends race. He’d been adamant that he wasn’t going to join in. I set up my pitch, chatted with friends and looked on as Monkey and the rest of Year One, joined Year Two and Reception in their relevant house groups.
When it came time for the Year One’s to do their bean bag race, I suddenly realised that Monkey wasn’t sitting down with his house. Where was he? Blimey, he’s at the starting line. He’s got a bean bag! He’s going to join in!!!! One of the TA’s walked along by the side of the track, for reassurance, but there he was. Monkey was joining in with Sports Day and his mother was crying behind her sunglasses. I was blown away, literally, blown away. It’s so horrible to send your child into school in tears, seeing his little face at the mere mention of this annual school event. But there he was, joining in, and smiling too!
He didn’t worry about where he was in the race, it didn’t matter, and I think I’m proudest of all about that. He dropped his bean bag, he picked it up and carried on. He finished the race, he got a sticker and his teacher ran over to congratulate him when he crossed the finish line. A nice touch, that meant a lot to him I’m sure, it certainly did to me.
Wow, Monkey was joining in with Sports Day. To be frank, if he did nothing else for the whole event, I could not have cared less. I waved over to him, well done Monkey, I am so proud of you. He beamed back at me and waved.
As the races progressed, I saw various teachers and TA’s talking to him, I saw his little head shaking. Oh well, he’s saying no to any more joining in. That’s ok. But no! There he was lining up for a running race. I was clearly going to be in need of more Kleenex. He ran, he flipping well ran, and he kept running. I cannot tell you how I was feeling.
His little face when I met him for lunch, he was beaming and I hugged him so hard. What a little super star.
Joining in with Sports Day may be no big deal for most children, but for Monkey it was his idea of torture. Something to be avoided at all costs. But yesterday he had some wonderful support from his teachers and TA’s and he believed in himself, and tried. I’ll never ask for anything more.
I was so proud of him, his involvement was a wonderful surprise, I think that might be the case for both of us actually. The occasion certainly called for a little chocolate treat after school and pizza and dough balls for tea!