IF YOU ARE A PERSON WHO FEELS THINGS VERY DEEPLY YOU SHOULD MAYBE AVOID THE MIDDLE SCHOOL TRACK MEET

Here's why:
  1. Someone will fall at the tail end of her 100 meter dash, maybe four strides away from the finish, when every heart is in every throat because the race was just that close. Not anymore.
  2. A girl will trip during the 100 m hurdles. "NBD," you'll think, as she gets up, starts to run again, and trips over the next hurdle. "Oh, man," you'll say, as she gets up, starts again, and trips over the one after that. Then, DEAR GOD MAKE IT STOP, because while she does manage to keep getting up, she trips over every remaining hurdle.
    Please--let her, at some point in her life, be the recipient of a prestigious award, so that she, at the end of her very moving acceptance speech, can tell this story. And, if it's not too much to ask, could she hold the award over her head and say, tearfully, but with the strength of ten thousand Olympic hurdlers, "I. GOT. UP." And the entire auditorium/world will jump to its feet. 🙏🏼
  3. A very small human, (possibly a second-grade walk-on?) about one-third of both the size and speed of his peers, will come out of the blocks at a full sprint, and, running after his competition, tiny legs churning, arms in the air, yell "WAAAAAAAAIT!!!!!"
  4. Your own child will not fall, but his whole race--four loops around, under the lights, *feels* like one big getting-up. Like just the tiniest Christmas Miracle. And you know he's tired, and you are so, so, proud, but you are also performing your own Feat of Strength in the Parenting Games which is: DO NOT EMBARRASS. So you stay quiet, snap a photo,
    and remember it the rest of your life.