A Gymnastics Coaches Blog.
Kate is 7 years old. When we first me she thought I was goofy, I could tell she thought she knew more about gymnastics than me. She constantly informed me about all the practice she’s had and the classes she had taken. Whenever I asked her to do a trick she would say “I know what that is because I learned it already, I’m good at it” She was good, not as good as she said she was. But good nonetheless. Kate is very small for her age but hates it when you tell her that, I called her munchkin once. I have never seen a seven year old with such a fierce glare. Kate and I get along really well now, she isn’t like most seven year olds. She does not like being silly, or goofing around. Instead I talk to her like I would talk to an adult, she responds in the same manner. She is probably more mature than most of my friends who are my age. Every once and a while I want to squeeze her and tell her how cute she is being when she acts like an adult but I know she would just say “Coach Annette, what are you doing” She hardly smiles, she is always very serious. She never cries either, or looks upset. She just might be the most calm and collected little person you’ll ever meet. One Monday I decided to take my overcrowded class to a gym located down the hall from the main gym. I announced it to the class and explained to them that they had to line up at the door so we could all walk down together. They did as they were told and I ran out to grab the keys to the other gym. Once we were down in the other room I counted my students. I was missing one. I recounted. I asked the girls if they knew who was missing, I honestly didn’t know at the time. They told me I was crazy, and that everyone was present. I didn’t believe them. They reassured me I miscounted before. I still didn’t believe them but I chose to ignore that feeling. I started to explain the activity I had planned for them when I noticed Kate standing in the doorway. I was right, I was missing someone. I walked over to her and noticed her bottom lip was quivering. She was trying so hard to hold in her tears. “You forgot me coach Annette.” My heart sank. All I could do was hug her. It was the first time she had ever hugged me back, she didn’t let go. I think she didn’t want me to see what she was crying into my shirt. I asked her if she had gotten scared and she nodded. I can’t believe what I put that child through. How could I have just left her? It’s amazing how kids can move on, after a few minutes Kate was fine. She was practicing her cartwheels like nothing was bothering her, thats because nothing was. I stood there watching her and she would smile at me. She was fine. I wasn’t, I was/am still upset about what I had done.
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