I have had a recent request to continue to post blogs regarding my son, and family's, experiences in the BMX racing world. I am happy, and honored, to do this as writing gives me an outlet that I don't always get in conversation and also because I am simply inspired by my children and what they have given me.
My last blog entry was written on the eve of a very big National race for my son. My husband, Greg, and I were incredibly nervous and unsure of what would happen to Nick emotionally, what competitors would show up and how the weekend would ultimately go. Well, I am thrilled to report that Nick had a phenomenal weekend; giving in only to goofy laughter with his friends, tricks at the campground and sleep at the end of the day. Nick did great, he rode like the athlete and champion he is and not once did he give in to his anxiety or emotions.
So why did I title this entry, "The Road to Recovery"? Well, for a couple of reason: the first being that this was the first stop on Nick's National circuit since learning that he is a Highly Sensitive Child dealing with a severe case of performance anxiety. Secondly, as any sports parent knows, there is no end to an athlete's "road" to success. We are three months away from marking the two-year anniversary of my family's "marriage" to the sport of BMX and Greg and I find ourselves dealing with the same issues and new issues every day. Nick has been racing in the Expert class for over a year now, one of the youngest riders to be in that class for that length of time, and every time he trains it is with the strength and effort of his first ride on the track. Whether it be driveway sprints and gate practice at home, elite practice at the track or simply a local race, Nick's experiences in BMX continue to take us down uncharted roads full of hairpin turns, painful potholes and thrilling hills and swoops.
To sum it up, we are on the road to recovery from a tough first few months this season and geared up to finish on top - so long as I keep my son's health, happiness and life a top priority. But here's the kicker: my daughter, Zoey - who isn't even four and a half yet, and ALL GIRL - rode in Oregon at the National also; not only making her main event but earning herself the nickname "Zoomin' Zoey". Now I have two in the sport, and although I'm slightly disappointed that the pretty tutu's, leotards, ballet slippers and tap shoes that Santa brought will have to stay in the closet, I am excited to see my daughter doing something she loves.
The sport of BMX has given my family so much: new friends, new experiences, new travels but mostly, it has given us a common bond that only we understand at times. I've learned that it's okay if family and friends think we are nuts for going broke trying to get to a race, for missing church on Easter for an egg-hunt on 30 lush oak tree acres at our local track - it doesn't matter, because for us, BMX is our religion. Just like at church, we are together, praying, singing, laughing and praising what the good Lord has given us: each other.
Oh yeah: Nick won everything all weekend, leaving Oregon with four National wins. Zoey brought home some big trophies too and the videos are hilarious - just as we anticipated.
Thanks for reading and as we approach one of the ABA's biggest California Nationals in two weeks, I will be sure to post another before/after blog.