a trophy

Siena has worked so hard in improving her swimming.  From the first day she started in a swim team, though non-competitive, she wanted to learn and get better at it.  Whatever it was they were learning.  But her first day she didn’t even say hello to her new coach, all she said “I don’t know how to do butterfly, I don’t think I should be here.”  And her teacher told her “that’s why you are here.”


Two and half years later, she is so good at swimming butterfly.  She loves it. It is her favorite stroke.  She also learned how to swim breaststroke, and how to do flip turns, and how to dive, and how to do so many more things.  She’s also learned to go fast.  And she practices three times a week, and she wishes she could be in the water every day.  She dreams of swimming.  She dreams of water.


Last month, after a year of practices and being in this (competitive) swim team, she received a trophy, she’s keeping right next to her bed.  A trophy or a ribbon or a button, it means so much to her, because it is a way to show herself in a very visual way, how much she’s improved.  It is not about the trophy or the button itself.  It is about seeing, having something to remind her how good or how fast she’s gotten.


It is all thanks to her own commitment and efforts.  Mark and I have nothing to do with it, besides driving her to practice and back.  We stay there to watch her, but it is all her.  She is the one working hard every time, learning, practicing, watching, listening.  It is all her.  This trophy is all about her and what she did.



We watch. We always do.

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And then we see this.  She’s always smiling.  It makes me happy.

DSC_0051-smallOfficials yawning.

DSC_0054-smallSwimmers yawning.  When we have to be there at 7:00, or 6:45am, or even 8:00 am, most times both days in the weekend.  We are tired.

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But we are there for her.

DSC_0068-small DSC_0070-smallSmiles. Always smiles.

DSC_0053-smallWe watch.

DSC_0023-smallWe wait.

DSC_0059-smallWe time.  We get ready.

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And in this meet, there was a fun race at the end.


No timers, no officials.  Just for fun.  Because who wouldn’t want to do an inner tube race, after two days of racing, right?

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And then we waited to see the trophies giving away in this sextathlon.  Everyone swam the same 6 races.  50 Freestyle, 50 breast stroke, 50 back stroke, 50 butterfly, 100 IM and


And Siena received 11th place for the 11 and 12 year olds.

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Oh my goodness.  You should have seen her face when they called her name.  She was so excited.  We all were.


Her coach stayed for the awards ceremony.  And it meant so much to Siena.  It meant so much he was there when she got her first trophy, after working so hard with him for the past 2 years.  Because it was him who welcomed her to that first day in class when Siena thought she shouldn’t be there for not knowing how to swim butterfly.  He was the one who taught her to do flip turns.  And to dive.  And how to move your arms and legs in breast stroke, and also, how to swim butterfly.


He is an important person in Siena’s life.  And a great role model.

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We are so proud of her. She’s accomplished so much thanks to her own efforts.  What a treat to be her mom.

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2 thoughts on “a trophy

  1. Glendie June 8, 2014 / 5:25 am

    What a touching record of Siena’s swimming journey, so far. Wonderful pictures and narative!!!

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