I just watched Track Coach and it brought back memories of when I was in grade 6. I joined the cross country running club. I hated running but joined because my friends were in the club. I worked hard and no matter how hard I trained, I constantly came in dead last. After yet another meet where I came in last I told my teacher/coach that I was going to quit. That I couldn't run, I hated running and all I was doing was pulling the team down. I don't recall his words, but I do remember he refused to let me quit. I remember feeling that he believed in me even though I didn't believe in me. I kept training and participating in the meets. He kept encouraging those who were at the top to stay there, and though I wasn't at the top, I remember he never gave up on me. He encouraged me to keep going, that I could do it.
Then the final meet came, a huge affair with all the schools from the Lower Mainland of British Columbia with hundreds of students running. We learned that the first 100 students across the line would win a running shoe keychain. I set off with the rest and quickly fell behind. I didn't stop, I kept running. My friends passed me and told me to keep running. I passed the line, finally, and received the 100th keychain. There were still several students behind me. For the first time, I was not last! I remember how excited I felt and how my friends were very happy for me.
The following week there was a school assembly. We in the track club were all called up in front of the school. The teacher/coach shared that we pulled high spots at the meet, that we brought home ribbons and trophies, and that everyone on the team came home with awards. He shared how proud he was of our hard work. I felt myself slinking down, I didn't win an award or ribbon or trophy. I came in 100th place, not 1st place and didn't deserve his praise.
Then he came behind me, put his hands on my shoulders and told the school he was proud of me personally because I never gave up and because of that, I pulled from last place to the middle of the race - which was an incredible personal triumph. He then talked on how its not who wins the race, what is more important is teamwork and doing your best. He spoke on how we all encouraged one another and how well we worked together, even though we all were racing alone.
I never forgot that moment and pass it on to younger people - never give up, give it your best, work with others, be a team and be proud of your accomplishments. It doesn't matter if you are 1st, what matters is doing your best.
Submitted by Anonymous
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