Running to catch up…

April 21, 2009



Sometimes being the youngest is tough. I was the youngest in my family too, so I understand what you’re going through. It never occurred to me to have this conversation with you until I watched you playing on the beach with your big brother and his friends. It was then that I decided I should carve out some time to explain that you won’t always be running to catch up.

All of the big kids had toy light sabers- but no one thought to give one to you. They formed teams- but never invited you to join. They laughed and joked- but you weren’t privy to the punch lines. And as I watched you running to keep up, trying so hard to be included I couldn’t help but feel sorry for you- I‘ve always been a sucker for the underdog. That’s why I called you over to sit in my lap. I wanted you to know just how valuable you were- even if the big kids couldn’t yet recognized it. I was certain you would want to remain with me- that the sting of being excluded had left you sad and in need of comfort. That’s why I was so surprised when you wanted to be released- “Let me go Dad, I’m playing with Mack”. I spread my arms and you were gone- determined to be accepted, running to catch up.

This is just one of your many strengths. All that I could focus on was how unfair it was for the older boys to dismiss you. I was upset with your brother for not making a place for you at their table; for not protecting you; for not fulfilling his obligations as the eldest son. But you showed me another side of the situation. Instead of surrendering to self pity you doggedly kept going, smile on your face, running to catch up.

You won’t always lag behind. One day soon you’ll be tall and strong. Your legs will carry you faster and your shoulders will willingly carry the burden of more weight. You all ready have the heart of a giant, give your body time to catch up- you won’t be a peanut forever. Remember even the mighty oak was once a sapling my son

And when you’re grown you’ll forge your own path in life and it will be a path that others will admire and wish to travel with you. When it’s your turn to lead take the time to occasionally glance over your shoulder at all the people who are lagging behind. Slow your stride and allow them to walk beside you. Let them know they are valued even if they aren’t as strong, as fast, as wise. Maybe you‘ll even confide in them that once you too were running to catch up. And this is how you will treat others, of this I am certain. I see the strength of your character and the shadow of the great man you will one day become every time I look into your eyes.

I love you nugget




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Mary Hanson posted the following on April 21, 2009 at 8:53 pm.

Love this… so true. 🙂

Susan posted the following on April 23, 2009 at 3:16 pm.

Wow do I ever know the feeling of being excluded because I was the youngest. It hurt.

On another subject though, you and Connie and your readers had better scoot on over to my blog for a contest for a new Tamron lens – but you gotta comment. Okee-dokee? Oh, and tell Connie to send me over a story!

Over at “Raisin Toast”

Mom of another Nugget posted the following on April 30, 2009 at 11:38 pm.

Oh, you made me cry. The ugly, sobbing heaving cry. My Nugget (same age as yours) is the little guy of our family too, and tries so hard to keep up. He needs me less and less these days and I’m not ready!
We love your blog. Keep writing, you have a gift.

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