Monday, May 24, 2010

Special Games

On Friday, my co-workers and I took some of the high schoolers we work with to volunteer at the Kiwanis Club Special Games. At first, I was a little nervous about having our kids (who have issues of their own and often need extra support and guidence when we go out in the community) interact with kids who maybe look different, and face different challenges than them. I reminded them on the way over that they should treat everyone with respect and kindness, and be open to making new friends that day. They all seemed to understand and promised to be on their best behavior.

Those kids seriously blew me away. All of the them! Both our kids and the kids participating in the games... they were all so inspiring and it was such a wonderful day! Our kids were tenderhearted and so encouraging to the little ones we were helping. They held their hands, pushed their wheelchairs during the races, cheered and rooted them on. I got a little misty eyed a few times because I was so overwhelmed by the positivity that was going on around me. Our kids were able to set aside their own issues and really focus on making the athletes feel important and supported. They never once complained about the weather, about being hungry or bored, about being tired... they had such a great attitude and really let themselves enjoy the experience. I was so completely impressed with everyone.

The athletes participating in the games looooooved having our kids to help them. They had their own personal cheering squad, and had tons of people to hug, high five, and show off their ribbons to after they finished their activities. It was so inspiring to see how positive these kids are and how willing they are to face challenges. They were all smiles and I appreciated how willing they were to share their day with us. It was seriously amazing to see two such different sets of kids who face a different set of challenges come and work together and have a fabulous time doing it.

It was such an awesome day. I remember standing in the middle of the field, watching one of our girls holding hands with one of the little athletes, cheering her on as the girl ran with the braces on her legs, and thinking "this is a beautiful day that I know I will remember for a long time". It was such a wonderful reminder that love and acceptance and encouraging others is really what life is all about.

1 comment:

  1. Oh my gosh, that sounds amazing! I'm getting a little misty eyed myself.