We had a good idea for a vacation this summer. We thought that after the boys wrestled at Nationals in Fargo, ND, we could finally see Mount Rushmore and the Black Hills. We’ve talked about taking that trip for years. Maybe I’ve wanted to see the Black Hills a little too badly. One time we had to take a detour through a corner of South Dakota, on our way back from Colorado. On this detour, we passed by a blackish looking hill. I pronounced, “Hey kids. Those are the Black Hills.”
Usually my family trusts my pronouncements. My family seemed a little iffy on this one. Eddie asked, “Really? That’s it?”
I’m like, “We’re in South Dakota. It’s a hill. It’s black. Those are the Black Hills. I don’t know what else you want from me, kid. Now, tell your teachers and your friends that your parents took you to the Black Hills this summer.”
I don’t know why some people have to knit pick the heck out of everything you say. Can’t they just trust me?
I didn’t realize when we were making all those Black Hills plans this year that Olivia’s missions trip was at the same time as the wrestling tournament. DANG!!! We just couldn’t see enjoying major sight seeing short a family member.
I hate calendars. Calendar makers are pessimists. They like ruining all our fun.The actual plan ended up being Scott and I going to Fargo on our own. The boys traveled with the team.
Scott and I spent four nights at a hotel, going back and forth to the Fargodome to watch the boys and their Wisconsin teammates. I really was sad about the family vacation being messed up, but I’m not gonna lie. Scott and I had some laughs.
I think I told you a while back that Scott and I were a little nervous about how we will survive when our kids don’t need us like they do now. It’s scary to not be needed. After our Fargo trip, we feel a little more confident we’ll survive. We forgot our kids happened because Scott and I like each other.
I think Scott and I had only one difference of opinion on our little vacation. That problem happened when we were deciding where to eat. Decision making can cause people like us some problems. Sometimes you just really need one person in a relationship who can handle the pressure of making a wrong choice…about tacos vs. hamburgers. Personally, I don’t need the stress.
I wish I would have written down all the times and reasons I was laughing my head off in Fargo. I can’t remember why now. Just so many, unimportant funny things can happen on any given day.
I do remember one thing that made me laugh until I felt like I had used up all my laughing for life. Scott has always said he has camera anxiety. I didn’t know that was real.
Personally, I think Scott is a cute guy. But, I have to agree with him. I haven’t seen many pictures that accurately represent the way I think he looks in real life. Scott says it’s because he gets nervous. As soon as someone brings out a camera, he starts debating in his head what he should do with his smile, posture, eyes. It’s a lot like deciding about tacos vs. hamburgers. There’s so much at stake.
Scott and I had some time to kill between the boys’ matches in the Fargodome. I felt like I could really help Scott figure out how to take carefree, happy pictures. We did some selfies. And, I don’t know. I just don’t know. It’s not that Scott looks so bad. It’s just that he looks unrecognizable as a human. I’m not actually sure how Scott could really look worse, unless he wore a hideous mask. Wait. Nope. Still not worse.
The harder he tries, the worse it gets.
Oops. Your eyes were closed.
Dang it. You closed them again.
Wait. Are you trying to do that? You have to keep your eyes open.
Wow! I can see you went to a lot of effort. Don’t do it again.
Okay, maybe one of your eyes looks okay in this?
We should stop. I’m starting to doubt our relationship.
I thought all it took was persistence. Sometimes I’m wrong.
Another thing we enjoyed doing in Fargo was watching freak athletes from 46 different states wrestle their hearts out. The wrestlers attend a camp a week prior to this week long tournament to train with their teammates from around their state. Every day, the kids work out at an intense pace for the better part of their waking hours. The wrestlers are generally trying to get down to their peak fighting weight too. There is a lot of expenditure; very few deposits.
On top of the body fuel issues, you’ve got kids away from home, sleeping in hotels and hanging out with their buddies. It’s easy not to sleep well. We decided that just learning to manage your energy for this thing could be a guy’s secret weapon.
At the end of the week Zeke’s eye was swollen shut, and Eddie was on crutches. He injured his hip. I might be tempted to doubt whether all the boys’ effort is worth the price. That would be a selfish thought.
I was trying to give Zeke some sympathy about how little he was eating. He reminded me that most of us eat WAY more than we really need to on any give day. It’s quite possible to survive on less, he told me. Then, I told him he must not understand that I have very little tolerance for hunger. I bet he never thought of that. Mr. Sillypants.
I haven’t always been the best at embracing difficulties: physical (especially physical), mental, emotional. I’m more in favor of things that happen without effort, and require little sacrifice. I can see what is happening with all these wrestlers though. I can see these kids are learning how to endure temporary discomfort to achieve long term goals.
Immediate gratification is a part of our wonderful, modern and convenient culture. It isn’t wrong. I love the drive up window. It’s just that I have this suspicion that having what we want, whenever we want it, gets us a little out of practice with self denial. Sometimes self denial is necessary, often helpful when building something meaningful.
I was also thinking that if a kid learns young that hard work, a bit of self denial and a dash of temporary discomfort can help them achieve something quite worthwhile over time, that kid might be well prepared for handling life. Life isn’t always like the drive up window.
Anyway, it’s too soon to say for sure if I’m right about all this. But, it helps a mom to believe.