With our two school sports days set across four days this week in a valiant attempt to dodge the rain, I didn't hold out much hope of either one happening when I read the weather forecast at the beginning of this week.
But lo and behold, yesterday the skies over our school field cleared for precisely four hours and my little girls very first sports day went ahead.
Like most other parents, I had a mixed bag of emotions slung over my shoulder as I took my front row seat beside the little track, opposite the rows of tiny primary coloured chairs. Lump firmly in throat I pulled myself together and decided to enjoy myself. Until she arrived on the field. All I can say is thank the lord for sunglasses, and the very fact there was enough sun for me to wear them!
Dressed in her little blue t-shirt, plaits swishing as she skipped along with her friends to the strain of Tina Turner's 'Simply the Best', she was innocence personified.
It's a jungle out there
A lamb to the slaughter about to wake up and realise it's a harsh, competitive jungle out there, or brave warrior about to discover her inner competitive streak? Being the sensitive, caring girl she is, I feared the former.
Three 'events' lay ahead
First up was the running race. Third. Not bad. Next was the egg and spoon (with a flat, round stone in place of an egg – apparently health and safety; egg allergies and all that). She came second.
I urged her on, watching her little face as her eyes darted to her nearest competitor. This was OK! She was enjoying it!! Relay was next. Grabbing the blue bean bag she dropped it in the bucket, ran to the finish, back to retrieve the bean bag, stumbled, dropped the bean bag, quickly recovered and smoothly passed it to her team mate.
No tears or tantrums at the dropped bean bag or not coming first. Had that been me at five years old I would have run straight into the crowd to find my mum and not come back out again until it was all over! I was very proud of her.
It's a draw!
Of course no winning house was announced, that was too competitive. Instead, through the loud haler, the teacher congratulated the children and parents for taking part and thanked everyone for coming.
It was all over, and right on cue the wind whipped up and the skies clouded over. Phew!
Jayne, Working Mum and Freelance Editor