I love stories. They are something that cannot be replaced by technology. They live the test of time. Even if they are passed down in history via technology.
I love times when people sit down face to face and share stories that we can laugh at, cry at and have the permission to share. I have one of these sharable moments. Gracie and many other students at her middle school have been training for races. One of these races was yesterday. It was a kids triathlon. The kids swam laps in the pool. They then ran outside to a transition area, put clothes on, jumped on their bikes and rode five miles. At the end of the bike ride they ran a mile around the high school track to the finish line.
Months of training had gone into this event. All with the guidance of a fantastic coach. He tirelessly worked with these kids. He taught many how to pace themselves. He taught them how to efficiently set up their transition areas. They ran and they swam. He gave them positive words of encouragement and told them he was proud of them. And they were ready.
One last thing, is what the email said on Friday. The coach asked if all of the families involved would take the time to help cheer on a student who has been training for his triathlon. This young man has cerebral palsy. He had been riding his bike in the hallways of the school to train. He swam, biked and used his walker to walk the final leg of his race. All the way through his race he was with his coach, my daughter's coach, every child's coach. And this man encouraged him along the way.
And the rest of the families and students cheered, too. All along the course. People who didn't even know this young man started chanting his name. There was screaming and hollering in the most respectful way. It was one of the most moving events I have ever been part of. I was so proud of this young man, this coach and of course the kids that the coach has been involved with. And I would venture a bet that this story will be told. Even by complete strangers.
And it should be.