History has a way of repeating itself… again… again and again. But not this time… They say the best prediction of the future is the past… and for the most part I agree but not today. Sometimes something somewhere can intervene. Dark storm clouds don’t always mean rain and the underdogs can win by a landslide. Sometimes fate is just a four letter word and destiny can swoop in and change history before it is made. And once in dark moon the future can be changed if something bigger intervenes and takes fate by the jugular and shows it what’s up. That’s where I come in… I was ready to knock fate out with a one-two punch. I needed to quietly put the past to bed and show my little C that sometimes I AM ALWAYS RIGHT! 😉 So this was it…. I dug deep… my little pep talk was going to turn the tables and reverse time….. I was about to be victorious in showing my little man that believing in himself could make all the difference in the world. As he jumped out of my car to go into the school I did what any Mom in my position would have done… well now I am getting ahead of myself. Oh snap! Ok… here we go… no worries… let’s do this!
Almost exactly one year ago to the day (give or take a week or three) my little C finally got brave enough to quietly raise his hand to indicate that he would also be running for the coveted class representative spot. Now wait… before we get much further I need to point one thing out… Carter is a lot of things. He’s incredibly kind, intensely thoughtful, loving, ridiculously off the charts smart but brave… nah… not my little man. In fact, he is the boy who stops on a timed test before aceing it so he doesn’t stand out as a wiz… he is the boy who is always at the end of the line so he doesn’t crowd his way in front. He is meek, humble, mild, shy and afraid to fail. Unfortunately he gets the last characteristic (curse) from me…. I am calculated. I weigh the odds of success vs possible failure and don’t bother to get my feet wet if success and world domination are not largely in my favor. Now back to the boy… my boy, Carter Tyler Lyon.
The morning started out like any other day… As he ran into the lunchroom his bright smile and beaming eyes won me over. For most “the look” on my Lyon cubs face would seem to have answered the question that had been on my mind all morning…. did he win the class election? But not me… I know my little Dude and the skip in his step and grin on his face was no indication of his success or failure. I wanted to play it cool so I restrained myself and didn’t ask him the results. Lunch was wrapping up and I couldn’t take the suspense any longer.
As I packed up our lunch I casually asked him how the election went… his deep brown eyes made contact with mine and I could see the spark in his eye… Olivia got it, she gave such a great speech! What came next was a life lesson that cut me to the core… the kind of thing that changes a person and I wasn’t ready to be the student to my 6 year old son that day. He said “but the good news was that it was close… really close…I only lost by one vote.” I swallowed
hard… my stomach was in knots and my heart was about to pound out of my chest… sometimes as a parent we have to do hard things. And it was time to teach my little man an important lesson in life. I asked him who he voted for…. even though in my heart I somehow already knew. … yea.. you guessed it… Olivia! I was somehow hoping that he wouldn’t do the math. I wasn’t ready to pick up the pieces of his broken heart off the cafeteria floor. I didn’t want him to know how close victory was…. it was so close he could probably have tasted it. Cart could have effortlessly obtained the grand title had he done what any normal person would have done and … YES… I am just going to say it… VOTED FOR HIMSELF!
He looked at me and with all the love in the world said “I know I would have won if I voted for myself but she gave such a great speech. I just had to vote for her. I really did want to win but I had to follow my heart. Are you mad at me Mommy?” Often times the teacher is the student .. the one who really learns the most. This is almost always the case for me, myself and I. My little man has a way of teaching me what matters most. It’s not about winning or losing… it’s how we play the game… and the game is called life. He followed his heart. He believed in something bigger than himself… he believed in voting for the best man or women for the job. And that’s exactly what he did.
So that night we did something special… we did what any Lyon pack would do and we celebrated! We didn’t celebrate Olivia’s win or Carter’s loss… we just celebrated! There was no talk of elections, life lessons or anything else that mattered.
We washed away our sorrows in milk shakes and golf cart rides and the rest is nothing but a blur. We did what we do best…. us. Life is a ride and it’s up to us to enjoy it.
Sometimes you win and sometimes you learn. For me … I tend to dabble around a little in both. But I seem to be doing a lot more learning than teaching these days. My little Lyon Man started being my teacher. … no words needed. I once read a quote that said “Children Learn From What They See, Not What You Say.” I can’t seem to take my eyes of my little man because he is always the star of my show.
My Little C may not have won his class election but he certainly won my heart over and quietly through his actions showed me there is so much more than winning the prize but cherishing the memory and standing up for who we are. In the famous words of my little man… “Just follow your heart.” It may not guarantee a victory but it is guaranteed to never leave your heart broken into pieces on the cafeteria floor.
Now the part that makes it real… If I was smart I would probably stop there… but not this girl. When rubber hits the road my fingers begin to type and they refuse to stop until the story is told. And there is so much more to tell.
Warning: The following content is not suitable for Mom’s who are trying to be Mother of the year.
Part Two… Back to where we started. Two years ago he ran; side note: voted for the opponent… followed his heart and lost by one vote. Last year he still had the shakes… after all it is not exactly amazing to work hard for something and come up empty handed. No one wants to be the last one picked… even if by default you get put on the winning team. So here is where I shine best… I see something in my little man that he doesn’t always know is there. I see him… the best man for the job. I don’t need to hear the other speeches because I already know what I have. And my Carter… well….he’s got game. He might not be the most competitive tear up the court or die trying kinda kid but with Carty you always know what you’re going to get. The kid who wears his heart on his sleeve. He may not give 100% to win… but he will give 200% to ensure he never lets you down.
So this year he got back on the horse. John Wayne said it best .. .. Courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyways. And that’s what this Lyon Cub did. He came back.. better than ever. He put in the time.. wrote a fabulous speech and waited for the ballots to come in. But this time I purchased a little insurance. I tried to reason with the kid and slither my way into his heart and get his mind right…. “Carter….losing by one vote is no way to go down. There is no lost respect in someone who gets knocked out… but if you’re going to fall… for the LOVE… please go down swinging!” I pleaded to him. RE-READ HIS OWN speech that he wrote about being the right man for the job… I hoped his own conving words would solidify his vote… but I couldn’t be too sure. After all he was the swing vote two years ago.
I tried it all… trust me…I tried the logical stuff… we reminisced about the “voting debacle” before and how it isn’t very much fun to lose.. I could sense I still hadn’t fully convinced him…. he was on the fence and history would not repeat itself if I had any say. So I dug deep and made my last 7 words Count… really count. Before he got out of my car I quietly yelled … “Carter, sweetie… remember if you don’t vote for yourself than you will be grounded”.* Now go ahead and judge.. but I’m not going to stick around to listen. Sometimes all we need in life is someone else believing in us even when we don’t always believe in ourselves. Someone else who sees us for who we are and isn’t afraid to remind us. The door closed and my job was done… there was nothing left to do but wait… and wait… and wait. So that’s just what I did.
Later that afternoon as he ran off the bus and the look on that kids face was priceless! There was no confusion. I could see the W in his eyes from across the lawn… He won!
So here is our little recap just incase my long winded short story board you to death and you dazed. Don’t feel bad… it happens. He (as in the boy) fell of the horse… got the wind knocked out of him…. retired from running for student council for a year….caught his breath and climbed back up. But he didn’t just hold on…. he learned from his mistakes and came back better than ever. Most importantly my Carty learned that believing in yourself is not a bad thing. In fact it is pretty magical. We don’t have to be able to do everything… but we are unstoppable if we believe we can. And I have to admit it… even though he won by more than 1 vote I still don’t regret HELPING (threatening) him make the right decision and put a big fat check mark right next to his name….. After all… if we don’t believe in ourselves… who will?
Full disclosure: I may be calculated in the things I try for… trying to avoid failure at all costs but not even having my Mom as the Superintendent of the schools was good enough to get me on the dance team. I was the girls who name never got called. But don’t worry I pretended like I wouldn’t have done it anyway while secretly. Oh… wait… she was only at principle that year so it isn’t as bad as it sounds… as if that is any better. Ha! And for the record I always knew I was a terrible dancer… but I thought I would get it because the couch really like my mom. After all the only year I was in the Gifted program was the year my Mom was the director of it. She was a really good mom and assured me I earned it on my own. I knew she didn’t use any pull to get me in…but I don’t blame the teacher for adding my name to the list. Unfortunately my Mom was always by the books. She was old school…she believed in earning everything and never getting special favors. Easy for her to say… she is seriously amazing at everything she does. She seriously doesn’t even know that under the letter A is B because she never once got one. Someone Day I will explain to her that there is also C, D and F. 🙂 She’s legit. Back to my ultimate failure… as if not getting it wasn’t enough… some pretty thick salt got added to my ALREADY WHEEZING WOUNDS… I made the default cattleguard team. PLEASE don’t ask me to repeat myself. And the Lyons… and Kings, we aren’t quitters. I am technically not a quitter because you can’t quit something you never start. I am fairly certain the color guard flag is still smashed behind the freezer in the guard. Talk about epic failure. Correction: * I am fully aware that although I stated my advice to Carty was only 7 words words … we all know it was 15″ish” but 15 sounded like a book and not important advice. Just because I talk a lot doesn’t mean I have to use big numbers to accurately describe how many words I used. It’s my blog… and I will write it my way. HA LOL Peace out people…. Enjoy the day! love. love.
P.S> You can’t keep a good dog down….. 🙂