“To you who are parents, I say, show love to your children. You know you love them, but make certain they know it as well. They are so precious. Let them know. Call upon our Heavenly Father for help as you care for their needs each day and as you deal with the challenges which inevitably come with parenthood. You need more than your own wisdom in rearing them.”
Thomas S. Monson

Friday, August 3, 2012

Track Districts - An amazing emotional roller coaster

Beware, if you know Jacob the way I know Jacob, this post might just leave you in tears!  

My son Jacob is an incredible runner.  He began running for Glencoe in both Cross Country and Track during his freshman year.  He has made huge improvements each year, leaving me to wonder, is there a limit to how fast a runner can get??   I have not seen that limit yet in my son!

Well this year in Track he had some goals, first was to qualify for the Centennial Invitational, which he did by shaving a full 10 seconds off his time at the Wilsonville Invitational. Richard and I took Joseph and watched this race and it was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!!  I blogged about this previously.  Next, he desperately wanted to qualify for State in the 3000, his strongest event.  His PR up until then was 9:20 at the Elden Keller Invitational.  He went to Districts feeling confident that he had a great chance of going to State, what a great way to end his high school running career!

He ran the 3000 the same day my father was put in the care center.  It was already a very emotional day for us all.  Richard and I went to watch him run.  He was doing so good, leading the pack the entire time!  As he started into his last lap I remember asking Richard, "is he going to do it?"  I was busy taking pictures and cheering him on.  I was in awe at his drive to succeed.  Then in the last stretch, two other runners made their move and after pushing hard the entire race, Jacob had nothing left to give. He ran his hardest and the look on his face as they passed him said it all.  My heart broke for him, but it was such an amazing run I was so very proud of him!  He crossed the finish line 3rd and right on the heels of second place.  He needed to place first or second to go to state.  As I write this I am so emotional, perhaps this is why I have waited so long to write this post.
the final stretch

My son crossed the finish line, ran a few more steps and collapsed.  I was up in the bleachers taking photos before I realized what had happened.  I swear my heart stopped beating for a few seconds.  The first place runner stopped to help him up, but Jacob is a big guy and another friend, Ryan England ran to his side, hoisted him up and together they tried to keep him moving.  I am so impressed with these friends of Jacob!  Richard ran from the bleachers to where they were and immediately took over trying to keep Jacob moving.  I wasn't too far behind.  Jacob had nothing left, he was exhausted, but his heart was still racing and we knew he had to keep moving.  I will forever be grateful to Richard who took over helping in Jacob's recovery.  A couple times Jacob fell to his knees and threw up.  People came by to offer condolences.  Jacob had lost his chance for State, but he was ok with that.  He had given it his all.  He wasn't upset like I thought he would be.  Jacob has grown a lot this past year of running.  Earlier in the season he had decided to run because he loves to run and not worry so much about winning.  Once his attitude changed, he started PR-ing almost every time he ran.  In fact, his final 3000 of the season he got a PR of 9:17.  Interesting huh?

On the way home we got Jacob some Gatorade and Chocolate Milk.  He had to run the 1500 the very next day and I was worried how this would affect him. His coach suggested he take a cold bath and get a good night's sleep.  His spirits remained high and I was so amazed at how he was handling it all. 

That night Richard and I spent at the ER with my Dad.  The next day was a blur.  In the evening Richard and I took the little kids to watch Jacob in his final District run.  He was seated 4th and it did not seem likely he would go to State, but we all still hoped somehow, some way, he would do it. 

He started out in 3rd place

He was in third place, but the runner in front of him burned out quickly.  Jacob kept up the intensity and as they came around the corner to the last stretch, I was again asking Richard, "do you think he will do it?" and sure enough Jacob came in second.  He finished strong with a time of 4:14, another PR.  I must say here that I felt a little sorry for the first place runner, because it was as if Jacob had just won it all!  His friends came running to hug him and Jacob kept chanting, "I'm going to State".  It was an amazing time for Jacob.  His coach came and hugged him and had tears in his eyes later when he told me how proud he was of Jacob.  A reporter from the Hillsboro Argus came to interview him and he was in the paper.  I could not have been prouder of my son, not just for winning, but for his attitude throughout the entire experience. Jacob's life story is an amazing tale of triumph under adversity.  I know that there is NOTHING in this world my son cannot do.  I am excited to see what the future holds for him!

I have hundreds of pics from Jacob's District runs, but here are a few of my favorites from the celebration!

Jacob and Abe:  The Victory Chant

Really, Abe is ok, just taking a break....

Boys State Qualifiers

Next up, the story of the State Competition, stay tuned!!

1 comment:

Evelyn said...

Gidge and I are so proud of Jacob. What a story of courage and graciousness!