This weekend my daughter had the opportunity to learn some hard life lessons and I’m so proud of her for taking it all in stride. She competed in her favorite gymnastics meet called the Queen of Hearts Invitational as an Excel Gold. Last year, she won first place in her age division as an Excel Silver, but her younger sister won the AA highest score, so she was crowned Queen of the entire meet for her level. This year, Brinley worked so hard on all of her routines and wanted so badly to be crowned AA Queen of the meet. She started off with a bang, scoring a 9.7 on her floor routine. The she scored a 9.0 on vault, which was probably accurate for her performance. Then she competed a practically perfect bar routine (the same routine that earned her a 9.65 at her last meet) and scored a 9.0, which was way too low for how she performed the routine. Her coach was upset and went to contest the score with the judges, who claimed she missed a skill. We had recorded the routine on our phones and could prove that she clearly hit that skill. When her coach showed the video to the judges, they agreed that they had made a mistake in the scoring, but would not change her score. We were all very disappointed. She went on to do an average beam routine.
During the awards ceremony, she was sad about the scoring error. I explained to her that she had competed well enough to win the AA Meet Queen regardless of what the scores showed. I explained that sometimes things in life do not go our way and we have to be able to be proud of ourselves for the way we know we performed and the way we handle situations that are out of our control and do not go our way. She was still disappointed and wished she could go back and show the judges her bar routine again, but she fought through her emotions and managed to appreciate winning first place in her age division. Here she is accepting the medals for first place in the all around for the Excel Gold Junior C division. She was sad that night, but has rededicated herself to working hard to prepare for her next meet in two weeks.
I am grateful for experiences like this for our children to learn hard lessons. I have to admit, I felt disappointed as well and wanted to go give that bar judge a piece of my mind. I didn’t want my daughter’s hard work to go unrewarded, and was sad that this little girl seems to get the short end of the stick in many different situations. However, I know in my heart that these are the experiences that make us stronger and teach us to rely on our inner sense of pride and not the accolades the world gives us. I’m proud of how everyone behaved and grateful for this beautiful little girl and her gorgeous smile!