|First Comp age 4|
As a former skater, (and an active member of our club's executive), I have a bit of knowledge that allows me to sit there and think, "Oh dear." but then you are prepared to deal with the child's disappointment later, when the results are posted. It reminded me of her first competition, where I don't think she knew there were going to be medals until the actual moment they were given out. And she whispered to me "Mummy, maybe I came first!" I said, "Maybe you came 5th!" in an excited voice, but she shook her head and said, "no I think I came first"...This was at four and a half. She came 5th, but was more disappointed that her friend (who came 6th) had a purple ribbon while hers was green. Interestingly enough, she spent the next two years coming 2nd or 3rd (no, never first), and was always very pleased with herself. She developed such poise. And given that she was always in the youngest group (in her category), we logged more than our share of early morning starts, which can mean being privy to some technical difficulties. One time, she had to start her solo four times, because of music problems. Each time she went out with a huge grin on her face and a big "ta da! Here I am!" only to be returned to her coach on the boards to wait. She came 2nd that time. Another time, someone blew a fuse in the arena and it was the one for the music system. She (and all the kids in her group...cannot say girls, because there were two boys as well) had to skate to their music played on a portable CD player! She came 3rd that time.
So, in the past few weeks, I can see a marked change in her skating, and preparation. This is in part, I am sure, to growth both physically and emotionally. It has me excited to see how (in a group of 12) she will be in competition next week. I would never share this much with her, however. That is not her style, so I keep my comments to recognition of hard work and great jumps and when I notice improvement. I let her coach funnel the psychology part..
Her focus this weekend though is on the televised Canadian championships. Last year, Nationals were held here on the Island, in Victoria, and I spent a week down there volunteering. She was able to be there with me for a portion of it (at 7 she was not old enough to volunteer), and she got to watch the Senior pairs practices. What a treat to meet the likes of Dylan and Kristen, and Rudy and Paige, Megan and Eric, and they were so silly all the time (that is what made the biggest mark on her), and yet they worked so hard. She found this amazing, and much more fun than watching the ladies practice (it's so quiet Mum!). This year, Nationals are in New Brunswick, so we are watching them on TV (and the internet! Thank you, Skate buzz!). And they are providing so much inspiration for this skating household!
|First Comp as Pre Preliminary|