|I didn't look like that during the race.|
Now, I grew up before the "everyone gets a trophy," mentality of kids' sports kicked in, but I can't say I really earned this one. I remember this day. A friend and I were dead last, as in the policeman that brought up the rear of the race asked us to please get inside his patrol car so he could drive more than 2 miles an hour (we did not). It was a one-mile fun run at my church and I think I finished in about an hour. Since I technically stepped over the finish line before my friend, I "won" my division: 10-12 year old girls.
Now running is one of my passions (that sounds so lame to say but it's true). I smiled when I saw the trophy because even at the time I knew I had not exactly challenged myself that day, but I remembered feeling that the trophy seemed to imply that I could in the future. I felt more athletic just holding it. I had a trophy. For a sport. If you knew me as a kid you would understand the emphasis of that statement.
Anyway, the trophy symbolized potential to me. The next year, I figured, maybe I would try to beat my time. After all, there might be more than two 10-12 year old girls in the race by then.
I thought about bringing the trophy home and displaying it somewhere meaningful, but I didn't. I put it back in the bin and closed it up. But, it was a reminder to me that sometimes all we need is a little positive reinforcement to spur a whole revolution of change. I didn't earn that trophy, but it made me feel like I could earn one someday. And now, twenty years later, I have a whole dresser drawer crammed with old race bibs and finisher medals.
Maybe I am more sentimental than I think.
Get out there and get healthy today, and earn it!