She had not qualified for this meet in the past, this was a first. Most kids at 12 are a little nervous walking into a big meet like this. Not Grace – she was one cool customer.
She was perfectly fine being dropped off at the front while I went and parked. She walked around deck and mingled with past and present coaches. Old friends and new. Wished her competitors well and sized up the pool and competition. She even gave her summer coach some sound advice on how they should negotiate warm ups!
I really expected her to do well in 100 back – she was so stinking close to that zone time. Her first race though was 100 free with a fairly short break between the two. I was a nervous wreck, Grace calm as can be.
She swam her 100 free and I looked to the electronic scoreboard and saw 108. A best time by a second and a half. And then a second glance. 106.93. I read it wrong. She took 3.5 seconds off. The look on her face was something I will never forget. She was absolutely shocked and thrilled with her time!
Not long after she swam 100 back. And yes she nailed that zone time, beat it by a full second. This night was one that won’t long be forgotten.
She wanted to stay and cheer on all of her friends. We watched every race and cheered for everyone.
I am proud of Grace – not just for her awesome times but also because she wasn’t nervous, didn’t cave to pressure and was a true sportsman! What an amazing person. What a night.