Yesterday I did something I hadn’t done in a loooong time: clean my wallet. If your wallet is anything like mine, Mary Poppin’s traveling bag has nothing on us: we can pull ANYTHING out of there. Once in a while I throw away old crap to make sure I have space for all the new phone numbers, cards and information that I will never call or use. During the exercise in organization I happened to find an FYE gift card. I have no idea how it got there nor when it got there. Sunshine checked on the Internet and I had the original $25 still available on it. SCORE!
Later that evening, we decided to go celebrate my job offer after Church. We went to Chili’s and had an amazing time as a family. The kids didn’t know why we were there because until I see the offer and actually accept it, I don’t want to get them excited (in the case of Mini-me) or totally bummed out (in the case of Skywalker). God knows I can only go through that one time, so I am saving it for when it actually happens.
During the conversation, Skywalker, who was sitting next to me, started talking about how he could win a race between the two of us. Having just completed a 5K not that long ago, the competitive streak attacked our table. Sunshine agreed that I would smoke the kid… Skywalker did not appreciate the challenge and all of a sudden I was agreeing to a race with my NINE YEAR OLD.
We were to run down the street to my brother’s house, touch his mailbox and run back up the street to our house. First one to touch our mailbox wins the FYE card. From there on, there was nothing but smack talk between the two of us. “Skywalker, can you please go brush your teeth? You know, so they are nice and clean when I beat you in the race tomorrow!” and “Mom, do you know where my jacket is? It’s going to be sad seeing you cry at the finish line and I don’t want to get cold waiting for you to get over your defeat…” You know, loving words. Even Mini-me got in it saying that I would win the race and get the “gold necklace” and Skywalker would get the “Silver necklace” (where did he learn about that, I don’t know, since the airtime the Olympics received in our home this year is about the same as Ronco Steak Knives infomercials… None.). His loyalty touched me (suck on that one Sunshine).
We took a break for Sunday School but as soon as we got back in the car the talk continued.
At 11:30 we stood in front of our house. Mini-me took his position and after a couple of false starts, the race was one.
I don’t know if you know this, but a 9-year old runs fast. Even if he doesn’t participate in sports, he runs at recess every day and with his friends all the time. He is a cheetah, sprints quick fast in short distances, while I am more of a water buffalo (yes, I just compared myself to a massive cow) and can run longer. I discovered this too late. There were a couple of times when I almost caught up, but when looking over his shoulders, he would see me and sprint again out of reach. The thoughts that went through my mind were not the ones of a loving mother, but the ones of a LOSING RUNNER. He beat me by about 10 feet. The irony of it was that he collapsed on the grass while I could’ve kept on running. Mini-me came running to me, jumping over his brother and declared me the Winner. Gotta love that kid!
When Skywalker caught his breath, he came over and put his hand on my shoulder, looked at me lovingly and said: “Where is my card?”
Now, there are a lot of things I can say here to excuse the fact that I lost, you know: the calf that received physical therapy this week, the lack of training time these last two weeks… you know, not excuses but REASONS. The reality is that he beat me fair and square. I went upstairs and got on the treadmill for the first time in two weeks. This is not over by far. You know that a re-match is coming. After all, second place is just the first loser.
Until then, you will now excuse me. I have a nine year old to take to the mall.