But for one thing, it's nice to show other parts of our lives. And for another, the older he gets, the more I realize that a lot of these are Wonder Boy's stories to share - not necessarily mine. And I think that is just something we all face as our children grow and become more and more independent. I do try to hit the highlights though.
And then there are moments like this one that I want to make sure and capture for those days when my memory starts to fade.
Here's the set up:
It's an absolutely beautiful day for soccer - crystal clear skies, cool breeze, 10:30am start time - just PERFECT! In the last meeting, the teams played to a 2 - 2 tie. They are very well matched with both being very fast and athletic with a number of quality skilled players. But this time, both teams barely have enough players to avoid the forfeit, meaning everyone on the field will have to play the whole game without a rest. So no matter what, this is likely to be a very different game.
I was both right and wrong about that last statement. It WAS a very different game from the first, but it was still a very tough, evenly matched game like the first time around. It may have been the most exciting soccer game I have ever watched Wonder Boy play!
The Boy's team gave up an early goal and went into half time still trailing 0 - 1. My heart was in my throat as every shot they took was handled by the other team's most excellent goal keeper. I was so worried that Wonder Boy's team would come out frustrated to start the second half and let up on their attempts. But I need not have fretted. They came out charging hard to start the second half and eventually wore the keeper down and evened things up. It looked like the tides had turned and the Boy and his team managed to take a 2 - 1 lead at about the mid-point of the second half. I held my breath as both teams fought to keep possession of the ball. And with about 5 minutes left in the game, the other team evened things up. I thought for sure we were headed for ANOTHER tie.
But THEN ... with just 3 minutes of game time left, Wonder Boy made his move - streaking ahead to chase down a pass from his teammate. He dribbled through a tight crowd and let loose a hard shot, low, just to the right of center on the goal. With all the stops the other team's keeper had made, I thought for certain he would get to this one too. But things came together in just the right fashion and the ball not only slipped through, but actually slid right between the keepers legs!
Talk about the crowd going wild! Wonder Dad and I yelled until I thought I would lose my voice! Talk about a truly proud parent moment!
The Boy and his team buckled down and weathered a ferocious flurry from the other team who did their level best to tie things up in the short time that remained. But on this day, the boy and his team came out on top! It was one of the BEST soccer moments our little family has ever lived!
But let me tell you WHY .... yes, there is something truly special about scoring, especially in a tight game like this. And scoring the WINNING goal is another level of amazing! But it really goes much deeper than even that.
You might recall me mentioning that in the fall we moved him to a different division. He *should* be playing in the u14 division, but we really wanted to challenge him, so we moved him to the u16 division. He has missed only 1 practice through both the fall and spring (due to an orchestra concert). He has never missed a game. He has played his heart out every time he has hit the pitch. And we have seen his game really grow through this process.
But one of the biggest struggles for him has been to earn the trust of his teammates. And in this game ... we saw that trust come through in spades! Wonder Boy has scored a number of goals through the fall and this spring, but this ONE GOAL seems to perfectly illustrate his efforts to me. And getting to watch that like we did ... well ... as a parent, there is just something truly special about it. To know the efforts that go into the moment truly heighten the experience.
I know I'm gushing. And I'll stop now. But it was a moment that I want to share, a moment I want to keep.