It's not as if we planned for it to happen this way; but as it turns out, all of our children (the ones that are old enough, anyway) participate in the Shenandoah Valley Children's Choir, and then they each have another extracurricular that they're involved in--something that is their own particular interest. For Josiah, that's NCFCA. For David, gymnastics. For Tobin, riding horses.
But what about Shav?
For quite a while, I've pondered something: what is Shav's thing? And Shav himself has wondered about this, too.
I'm still trying to figure him out. Shav is tenderhearted, extremely kind, plays very well with his little sister, would rather stay home than go along to run errands or similar excursions, gets along well with his big brothers (although he does tend to be a tiger cub--"pouncing" on them, but then shrieking and withdrawing when they "pounce" back), is a good buddy for Tobin and always has been, is creative with LEGO building and has had a long attention span and great attention to details with them since a very young age. Shav is amazing.
For the past few months, when I've hugged and kissed him goodnight, I've often had the thought, "I wish I had had more time to spend with Shav today." Fact is, I want to be with him. I want to learn more about who he is. I want to figure him out and discover what makes him tick.
He's still somewhat of a mystery to me.
As this summer approached, Shav and I were talking about what special thing he might like to do; and he announced that he'd like to try soccer. I pushed aside my suspicion that soccer is not really his thing (my first clue it's not his thing? at home, he never grabs a soccer ball and runs outside to play) and agreed that I would keep my eyes open for an opportunity for him to do soccer. When the local parks & rec department was offering a one-week soccer camp (an hour and a half each morning), it seemed like the perfect chance.
He's played soccer before, when he was much younger and he and Tobin could play together on a team, so this wasn't an entirely new experience for him. He was so excited about this camp and had an unfailing good attitude each morning, even though he had to wake up earlier than normal to get to soccer camp on time. The weather was great all week, but hot; and he would be covered in sweat when I picked him up, but he never complained. Each day he reported what new skill he learned that day, as well as anything else of interest that happened. His coach was friendly and encouraging, and it was a good experience all the way around.
The best part? It was something that Shav did on his own, without following in the footsteps of any of his older brothers.
Don't get me wrong: it's a wonderful thing to follow behind people like Josiah, David, and Tobin, and Shav plays that role beautifully. But for this time, it was fun to have this be Shav's activity--just Shav's.
I loved the drives to and from camp with him, and I loved seeing his joy. He is so very dear to my heart.
On the last day, I took along my camera...
It was bright and hot, and Benjamin wasn't a huge fan. He is, however, a big fan of David. :)
He's well on his way. :)