The world of competitive sports is new to me. I danced through middle school, high school and college (and shoehorned in a class here and there during law school). I was in exactly one competition. My parents weren't the type to ask, "So, why aren't you joining the team? We really want to meet those other parents and do all that social stuff that accompanies kids' sports!!" Pretty much the exact opposite. So it was orchestra for me until I dropped violin, and then dance classes because I loved them so much and had a couple of friends who did it too.
I had a life-changing dance teacher during college. He left such an impression that I enrolled P in a kids' dance class when she was about 3, hoping that even this early exposure would give her some new knowledge of the amazing things she could do and express through dance. She seemed to enjoy it...until one day, she caught a glimpse of the acrobatic gymnasts practicing. P was transfixed, and remains that way today. Really! Her focus is remarkable.
She's joined an amazing team and has competed in exactly two meets so far. It's been a great learning experience for me from start to finish. I didn't know how she'd react or even how I'd be feeling.
I'll probably write another post about P and her developments in the sport. But here's the short story on what I observed about myself: Whether she got third or first place (she's gotten both so far), I felt no different. I just felt so happy watching her do something she loves to do, watching her make friends and develop maturity, and watching her reap the rewards of persistent hard work. Her triceps tell it all. (More than my own silent muscles.)
That was really interesting to me, to feel like the outcome that mattered most wasn't the score after all.