Tuesday, March 26, 2013

"A child's smile is one of life's greatest blessings."

This is Jack, my nine year old son. The smile on his face makes my heart melt. It's one of those contagious smiles, you know the kind where you smile back just because. I'm sure you are smiling right now just looking at it.

What makes my heart melt isn't because he's my son and I'm biased, it's "how" the smile got there...

Every year my son's elementary school does a fundraiser called the "Cougar Run." Each grade takes the field and runs for a half hour straight, earning money for every lap they complete.

Here, Jack is smiling with some of his classmates before the run and I'm smiling because Jack has "bunny ears." Does that ever get old?!

For the past 4 years, Jack has placed either 1st or 2nd for running the most laps at the event, last year he did 16 laps. Amazing for a 3rd grader. Here, Jack is running and not smiling. He didn't smile at all during the run.

When the 30 minutes were up...Jack had run 14 laps total. He didn't meet his goal of 17 laps and was very upset. As a mother and a runner, I think running just one lap is fantastic, let alone 14...but he didn't want to hear it from me. My words were futile. 

Here, while all of Jack's classmates were enjoying a nice cold Otter-Pop, Jack was pouting. It's hard to watch your child learn one of life's lessons, "you can't always be number one." 

Many of Jack's friends were trying to cheer him up, but it was Talahiva who brought out that great smile of his. Pretending to be Oprah Winfrey, Talahiva interviewed Jack on his running achievement. 

almost there....

there it is...

To Talahiva and Jack's other classmates who were trying to cheer up Jack: I want you to know that you all possess a wonderful quality called friendship. I admire all of you. A friend lifts you up when you are down. A friend cheers you on, no matter what. A friend takes a genuine interest in others. A friend is a positive person. And a friend makes you laugh.

Jack is blessed to have such good, caring friends. And I am blessed to have captured Talahiva turning Jack's frown up-side down! Thank you Talahiva.

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