Apparently I missed a week without noticing…. OOPS! 

2 weekends ago, we went to Kermit’s first wrestling match.  He’s been practicing for about a month (Monday night’s only) with Daddy and a bunch of other kids his age. The town where he goes to school is sort of known for its wrestling program.  Todd and I both grew up there.  He a wrestler and I a cheerleader.  We had been looking forward to this day since about a week after he was born.  I couldn’t have been more excited and nervous.  When we talked about which tournament to go to there was one about 5 minutes from our house, where probably none of his friends would be.  Or there was the one about 45 minutes from our house where probably all of his friends would be.  Since it’s for fun at this age, they don’t travel to tournaments as a team, it’s  “go if you want” tournaments.    I really, really wanted to take him to the one where  none of his friends would be.  Reason #1: I wouldn’t run in to any of the other parents.  I had this fear that he wouldn’t do well.  Comparing him to some of our friends’ children who had recently done very well at a tournament, it didn’t want to see him lose and have our friends see him lose.  TERRIBLE, I know.  I don’t know why I was so worried about him winning and not losing.  This makes me a more competitive parent that I knew I was.  This makes me THAT Stage Mom, “Perform dancing monkey and don’t disappoint me!!”  I couldn’t believe I was having these thoughts/feelings.  Todd on the other hand wanted to take him to the one that was farther away, where all of his friends would be.  He thought it would be more fun.  He was right, and in the end that was one we took him too, especially since I never mentioned my irrational thoughts to my husband.  He would have called me crazy.  Reason #2 for wanting to go to the closer/friendless tournament: I’d get to sleep in a little and not have to drag the whole family out of the house by 7 am.  Still we ended up going to the farther/friend filled tournament.

We dropped the boys off to weigh in (he weighed in at 44.4 lbs) and Pink, Green and I went looking for coffee and an ATM.  This was a terribly long errand.  Should have been 5 minutes into town, instead we had to drive to the other end of the world.  We should have been gone 15 minutes, instead it was pushing an hour.  Lucky for us, Todd is never late, always early and we didn’t miss anything.  We got back and unloaded and made our way inside.

There was plenty of down time.  We of course ran into a bunch of people we know and thankfully I learned a bit about how to be a wrestling mom.  I talked to a few parents and they all talked about how their kids had *GASP* lost a time or 2.  How some of their kids backed out and not wanted to wrestle, how they would cry (as I was sure Kermit would) and how they tried to get them to get back on the horse/mat!  I don’t know why I kept having this feeling that he should have it all figured out already.  I don’t really remember the days of when my brother was that little (especially since I’m 2 years younger than him) and he would go to these tournaments.  The last match I had been to was a highschool one.  It was probably the one when our town wrestled the rival town and 2000 fans would pack the gym and cheer for their team.  These guys were GOOD.  They knew how to wrestle.  They knew their moves, knew what to expect was coming at them and knew how to win.  I kept forgetting that he was only in Kindergarten and has 8 years or so to get it figured out.  Then again, if he doesn’t want to wrestle all they way to highschool, I guess that’s ok too.  But since we had been building this day up in my mind for the last 5+ years, I was sure I was sure I knew exactly how it would go.

His first match was tough.  The kid had an older brother who had no doubt spent plenty of time coach/wrestling/beating on the younger brother.  He really knew his moves and was good.

I was pleasantly surprised at how well Kermit kept up to him.  He was always wrestling from behind in points but he never stopped fighting.  Since he was new to this whole “Live Wrestling”, he really wasn’t sure what to do.  This kid was attacking him and he was always on the defense.  I, like a crazy person, was yelling things from mat side.  Todd, stood back and watched.  He leaned on the wall about 10 feet behind me.  I kept motioning for  him to come over and ‘coach’ but he wouldn’t at first.  He’s not that guy.  But I am, and whatever I would yell, Kermit would do.  He needed some help.  He needed to know we were there and that we would give him advice.  After the first period, Todd came mat side and coached him through the next period.  During the 2nd period, he got hurt and started crying.  I nearly had to scoop him up and run him to safety.  But what kind of mom would I be if I did that.  I told him it was ok and get back out there.  The kid pushed his head in to the mat (as will happen a million more times) and it hurt him. I’d say it was more scary and surprising than hurtful.    He ended up losing to this kid.  He was a good sport about it but definitely hurt his pride.  He sat on Todd’s lap and whimpered.  He didn’t want to go back out.  He didn’t want to wrestle again.

It took Todd the whole next match to convince him to give it another shot.  I don’t even know what he said to him, what sage fatherly advice was passed down, but it worked.  He decided to give it another shot.  His second match went much better.  He was much better matched, as far as skill goes, to this kid.  They were back and forth with points and in the end Kermit did a reversal and won!  WHOO HOO!!

His third match went so quickly I nearly missed it because I was feeding Green.  It lasted probably less than a minute and he was pinned.  But he really didn’t care about that loss.  He has WON ONE!!  He ended up taking 3rd over all in his bracket and got a medal (here’s a little secret, they all got medals, except for those who took 1st, they got a bobble head wrestler). 

He did so much better than I gave him credit for.  He handled his loss about the way I expected, but he wrestled like a champ and got back up to do it again. He got a taste for what it’s like to wrestle at a tournament.  He was bummed the didn’t get the bobble head and now we had something for him to strive for.  Something for him to work towards.  He wanted that 1st place whatever it was.  He talked about it many times since that Saturday. 

Here is one excited 3rd placer!!  He was jacked to get the medal and show it off to everyone.  On our way out of the bracketing room, the family of the first boy he lost to was walking beside us.  The older brother tapped him on the shoulder and said “Good job Buddy.  You wrestled really good.”  WOW.  I couldn’t believe the sportsmanship.  I asked his mom (wasn’t sure he was from their family) if tha was her boy and she said yes.  I praised her for the great job she did raising them and their incredible sportsmanship.  I was blown away. 

I was glad we had gone to the tournament with the people we knew.  It started his wrestling career (can I call it that?) off to a good, team spirited start, for him and I both. These will be the parents and kids we spend the next 12 years wrestling with, why wouldn’t we all be there in the beginning together?

I couldn’t be more proud of him.  He really showed me that he is a lot older than I give him credit for, but then again kids always are.   GREAT JOB KERMIT!!!  Mommy and Daddy are so proud you are our boy!


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