Saturday, April 10, 2010

A Day With Special Olympics

Special Olympics was hosting a clinic for Summer Olympics. It was a good opportunity for The Love Magnet to try track, and for two of my boys to volunteer with the basketball clinic. Off we went to spend the day with Special Olympics.

The Love Magnet is good at stretching




Then came the jumping and dancing. Oh yeah, baby, this is more like it!




Second born didn't want to warm up. It was cold. I think he felt silly jumping around.



The Love Magnet was taken to the medical area for a screening. All Special Olympians are require to have a screening, which is then good for the next three years to compete in Special Olympics. The Love Magnet was first measured and weighed. Then came a vision screening. Then a nurse checked her oxygen saturation levels and blood pressure. After that we were escorted to a hearing screening. The Love Magnet's ears were checked, a tympanogram was taken to measure pressure in her ears (and I knew exactly what they were doing because we've covered it in Audiology class). Next she was given a hearing screening. I was impressed with the medical personnel. My daughter turns shy when she is around many unfamiliar people. They were still able to elicit responses from her to conduct the required testing. Here she is, waiting to hear the "beep". She would barely raise her hand, but she did respond when she was supposed to.


The health screening also included orthopedic and a physical. All for free. These people are angels for volunteering their time for Special Olympics. I learned during the International Special Olympics, that often these medical professionals are the only ones the Special Olympians see (especially Olympians from third world countries) because medical care is not affordable or because is just isn't available.

We had a good lunch donated by Blimpie. The Love Magnet loved their sandwiches.
Thanks, Blimpie!

After lunch, we went to check out Secondborn who was volunteering in the basketball clinic. He did good work today.

Thirdborn also volunteered for the basketball clinic. He did good work today, too. Thirdborn wants to be a unified partner with The Love Magnet when she competes in Special Olympics.


We met up with our track group again. First the older kids ran a 400m race. Then the younger kids were put in line with some cheerers to run a 50m dash. The Love Magnet was excited and took a race stance the way she saw it done in the Olympics (Wii Olympics, that is). The head coach called out "On your MARK! Get SET! GO!"

The Love Magnet ran.....



......and didn't stop at the 50m mark. She kept running. I called her to come back. Her coach called her to come back. Her friends called her to come back.

The Love Magnet kept on running.........


....all the way around the track for the full 400m. When she hit the finish line, she walked over to the grass, lay down and declared to anyone who would listen "I am DONE!" That was such a long run for a little girl.


She literally was done. That self-imposed 400m took the wind out of her sails. As we left, she declared she deserved a milkshake. We agreed and headed off to find one. After all, a cookie-dough milkshake is the perfect reward for Special Olympians.
If you are ever wanting to find a great chance to volunteer as a family, check out Special Olympics in your area. Find out where at www.specialolympics.org.

8 comments:

Runningmama said...

You might have a future long-distance runner on your hands...few people will run farther than they have to!

Tiffany said...

What a great post! I'm so proud of her. She is such a doll. I'm also very proud of those boys of yours. They are having opportunities to reach outside themselves more than most boys their age. Good work mama for making all these experiences happen. Love you!

Al, Wendy, Max, and Lil said...

That was my fav. post of your to date! And that picture of E and L on the basketball court is FANTASTIC!!! I love that protective, unflappable look on his face while she is hugging him so tight. Wonderful photo!

Amy said...

Wow-what a cute kid!

Emma said...

That sound just like TLM. Always going the extra mile (he he) so cute can't wait to see you guys again!

Angela said...

Loved your post! Love your family! Can't wait until she competes- I am excited.

Michelle said...

that looks like it was the perfect day!

Rachel Smith said...

So hilarious...I am so looking forward to days just like this.