Our Daily (G)races

Training to be the best wife, mom, runner, and person I can be each and every day....

Monday, October 12, 2015

The drive within Emma

Emma's gymnastics journey in the past six months has been well documented by me on this blog, Facebook, and Instagram.  It has been a six months filled with so much of everything that it is hard to think about at times.  Prayer, discussion, arguments, tears, decisions, encouragement, hugs, smiles, and cheers.

Last April we began the process of deciding to change gyms.  Emma was told that being a Level 5 gynnast was "not the plan for her."  She would remain a Level 4 gymnast for another season.  Emma couldn't live with that decision and neither could Drew and I.  So began the process of discussion and prayer.  What would be the right thing do to for Emma and for our family?  Ultimately, we moved Emma to AIM Athletics in May.  She was excited to begin this new journey.

Things were progressing nicely except for that darn flyaway dismount and then the broken finger happened at the beginning of July.  A broken finger for a gymnast means no bar work at all.  That meant Emma couldn't work on her yet to be learned required Level 5 bar dismount.  Ugh!  She continued to do everything else possible...some of the skills modified...but she still worked out 15 hours a week.  Finally almost 8 weeks later Emma was out of her brace and released to full activity as tolerated.  She was back at it and the season was only three weeks away.  She had to learn the flyaway and she did.

Then BOOM...I want to quit!  That was followed by a big fat WHAT from me and Drew.  That was followed by lots of tears, arguing, discussion, and prayer.  To be perfectly honest, after the first two days of this I removed myself from it totally.  I was too upset by Emma's decision and I was afraid I would just yell if we talked about it.  So, I left it up to Drew and her coaches.  Emma knew exactly what I felt she should do.  Thankfully after several very tough days she decided to stick out the season.  We all asked for six weeks and she agreed to give us and her that. 

Five meets in a row.  That is a lot and has never happened in any other season.  Emma didn't compete bars at the first meet.  Her hand was not ready and neither was her routine.  She was not strong enough yet.  She fell on bars at the second meet.  She still qualified for the district meet.  She fell on beam at the third meet.  Her AA still went up from the previous week.  Meet four was great.  She had her highest and best bar score of the season.  She looked really good on every event.

Yesterday was the District meet.  Somewhere in the past six weeks Emma decided she wanted to go to the State meet.  That would mean another month in the gym.  I quietly cheered her on from the sidelines so thankful to see her smile at the gym, when she left practice, and at the meets.  Emma did not have her best AA yesterday.  Floor was okay, bars and vault were really good.  She had her highest bar score of the season.  Beam looked great, but the judge was a little harsh in my opinion (she was harsh on every competitor).  Either way Emma did not fall.  She landed her skills.  She smiled! Drew and I smiled. 

Emma finished in 5th place in her division.  She qualified for the state meet.  She had a 3rd, 4th, 7th and 9th place finish on the four events.  She was so close to the podium and I know that she was a little disappointed by that, but she did great.  For the girl who was told "no level 5 for you", who broke her finger 3 months ago, and who quit 7 weeks ago she qualified for state.  Once Emma committed to the season she was committed to the season.  I am so proud of her for accomplishing her goal.  All I ever wanted for Emma was to accomplish her goal and have no regrets.  She wanted to be a Level 5 gymnast and she is a successful Level 5 gymnast.  Anything from this point forward is just icing on the cake.

We are going to Austin in November!!!  So proud of you Emma Caroline!!!!

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