“You will soon witness a miracle” That is what the fortune in my fortune cookie said on Thursday. I believe that on Saturday morning I did just that!
Maddox has been wrestling with the North Gwinnett Youth Wrestling Club. It’s his first season and he’s loving every minute of it. He first decided he wanted to do it because 3 of “the guys” (our nephews Maxwell, Holden, and Lucas) are on the team. Of course, Jim’s passion for the sport helped seal the deal! I went to the orientation meeting in November and was concerned about the long season and the two practices a week. Maddox and Jim both assured me that it would be fine. So, we signed him up and went and got the appropriate gear! Who knew there was such a tiny singlet!!!
Maddox worked hard at practice and I have watched him develop right before my eyes! He went from being clueless to a true competitor! When the season first started Jim and I discussed the importance of just keeping it fun. We also were not going to put him in a tournament before we felt he was ready. Each Thursday at practice the coaches would ask what tournament the kids had chosen to go to that weekend. Maddox would look at me each time a tournament was called out and give me this look as if to say “what, I’m not going to that one either??” Finally, in mid-December Maddox BEGGED to be signed up for the Madison County Beginners Tournament (a beginners tournament is only open to 1st and 2nd year wrestlers). I called Jim at the fire station and pled Maddox’s case. He agreed that if he wanted to do it we would give it a shot! The guys signed up for the tournament too so on Sunday, December 18, 2011 Jim, Maddox, Cooper and I along with Brenda, Kelley, Maxwell, Holden, and Lucas all made the trek to Madison County to wrestle. Remember, this is Maddox’s very first time to wrestle an official match! Really, it is the first time for him to wrestle an opponent who is his same age and weight! Maddox is six years old and weighs 41 lbs….he is the YOUNGEST kid on the team! I was a nervous wreck!! It’s Maddox’s turn to wrestle and he lost his first match. He got knocked in the nose, but he continued to wrestle. He came off the mat wide-eyed, but still pumped that he had been on the mat! His second bout, he PINS his opponent!!!!!!! WHAT???!!!! I was crying tears of joy and we were going bananas! It turns out that Maddox has Jim’s competitive spirit (and my good looks, ha ha!!) and really turned it on as soon as he put his toe on the line. He LOVED the competition!! He ended up placing second in his weight class and went home with a silver medal…we were so proud!
We took him to 3 more beginners tournaments where he won 2nd in all of them. He also participated in our club’s open tournament (he didn’t place and was heartbroken) and we also took him to Dixie Nationals (at the Georgia World Congress Center) where he lost two matches and was out of the tournament. However, we were extremely proud of how he wrestled in the open tournaments. He never gave up and wrestled hard until the end!!!
Fast forward to 3 weeks ago….the Coaches were asking who was interested in trying to make it to the Georgia Little Kids State Tournament? I kept my mouth shut, I assumed that because it was Maddox’s first year that we wouldn’t have a chance. Coach said to me, you know, for State they have a 43 lb weight class….how much does Maddox weigh? He weighs 41 lbs but he has been wrestling in the under 45 lbs weight class. Hmmmmm….Coach thinks he can qualify for State, should we do it?? I ask Maddox and his answer is emphatically YES!! OK…we’ll try!
We went to the State Qualifier tournament last weekend…lo and behold, Maddox placed 4th and is now a STATE QUALIFIER!!! We are now going to “the big show” on Saturday, March 10 at Milton High School. He will compete with the top kids in the State of Georgia! I cannot believe it! So, it seems that my fortune on Thursday night came true…I witnessed a miracle as I watched my six year old son who 3 short months ago was clueless about the sport is now going to compete on the state level! He has progressed so much and developed into a “little assassin” (as Jim likes to call him). Plus, there isn’t a more adorable 6 year old on the mat!