Knee Socks.

Knee socks.

I always knew they had secret powers.  Every time I run with them on, I feel faster.  And lets face it, hot pink knee socks  make you smile.  They just do.

So,when my little girl asked me for a pair of new running socks…ones that come up to her knees…I happily obliged by door-busting some Hello Kitty ones for her.

“Mommy!  You got me knee high new running socks!  HUUUUUUHHH!!!! And they are purple with Hello Kitty on them?!?!?!?! Mom!  You are the best!!!”

Knee sock power.

The shoes and socks flew off in a scurry and the new socks went on.  Off we went to the HS conference track meet.  As much as I wanted her to love being in her dance tutu’s the most, I have to admit…seeing her decked out in running gear is pretty cute.  It’s because of the massive smile she plasters on her face when she has it on.

10 year from now, she’s going to be telling me to stop trying to act like running is my sport.  I’m telling you!  It’s coming.  Volunteering to help coach was a good call.  Brianne looks up to these distance runners like they are super heroes…larger than life.  Running cool down laps with the 2 milers all decked out in those new knee socks?  Look out.  She’s in heaven.  It’s impacting her for life.

No one is ever going to believe I didn’t push her into running.  And, maybe, by exposing her to it, I inadvertently have.  But her young love for the sport has reaffirmed my own.  Little Coach.  She’s been so upset with me this spring for not being more involved with track.  Silly me, I thought she might want to spend that time playing t-ball or playing with her pre-school friends.  (No to mention being a little worried about her wandering over towards the flying shot put…)

As a parent, I’m constantly trying to make sure I do right by my kids.  Teach them ABC’s.  Get them in pre-school.  Take them to story time…play group…dance class…expose them to the arts… pick up another language…making sure their ready to compete with the rest of the world.  But, all that work I do trying to expose Brianne to everything under the sun doesn’t hold a candle to her witnessing first hand what I-and other people- are passionate about.  Despite her occasional toddler tantrum, coaching as been an amazing beacon for both of us.  I need it just as much as she does.

There’s something scary about becoming involved in sports.  You become attached.  To the athletes..the coaches…the adrenalin…and life lasting friendships form along the way.  But, fear means ‘go.’  It means you’re probably barking up the right tree.  As scary as it is to risk my kids interrupting something important, or distracting the ‘runners’ from focusing on their race…or taking my kids out of toddler activities to devote more time…someone big keeps telling me to quit worrying about it.  So, they’ll be ‘Coach’s kids.’

Watching Brianne do ‘knees up, head down, on my toes,’ sprints across the locker room, one of the high school runners said to me,

“I like when Brianne is around before the race…it makes me relax and smile.  It helps calm my nerves.  And when I see her cheering for me, I think to myself…’I can’t run bad in front of Bri!”

Brianne.  Little Runner.  Little Coach.  Big inspiration.  Even to her little sister, who now chants “I go running!” when she sees Brianne putting her running shoes on.

I’ve always marveled at successful people who’ve known what they have wanted to do since they were toddlers.  Why do I feel like my own daughter is one of those people?

Tutu’s say ‘what’?!?!’

Happy Strides.

Megs

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