Have you ever heard of it? The Ohio Wheelchair Games is an athletic event for parathletes. I don't know all of the details, but I do know they have track events and swimming events and this year Bryson was old enough to be in the swimming events. You have to at least be 7 years old to be in the junior competitions. It is a pretty cool event where the athletes will compete against other people in their age group and classification (that being differing levels of ability). We heard about the event through the swimming team Bryson is a part of through The Adaptive Sports of Ohio nonprofit organization. (They have a website http://www.ohioadaptivesports.com/ if you are interested.) Bryson did an amazing job and he loved racing! He came in first place in the four events he competed in, but I will have to be honest and tell you that I'm sure there wasn't anyone competing in his age and classification level for the swimming. He did race against other people, which he enjoyed, but his place didn't matter because he wasn't technically competing against them. It was so much fun to watch him race. We had been timing him in practice, but nothing prepared us for how well he would do when he was actually competing. He had his best times in each event he did! And as he finished each race he was beaming! I think it helped that he had quite the cheering section, grandma, grandpas, an uncle and aunt, cousins, and even I think would be a third cousin. (Thanks to all)Even Brutus came down to visit the athletes (I forgot to mention that the swimming events took place in the class pool at OSU).
We are reminded often as we watch him swim that one of Beau's first comments to his mom after his lawnmower accident was "and he was just learning how to swim..." At that time we really didn't know what Bryson would be capable of but look at him now! He is a much better swimmer than I am!
Since Bryson enjoyed the swimming competition soon we will be headed to West Virginia for another one. The Ohio Wheelchair games was not a sanctioned event this year (which means their times won't qualify for nationals) so that's why we are doing another competition. If he does as well at this one it looks like he could go to the Junior Nationals in Chicago during the summer.
Oh and I almost forgot to mention that on Monday of this week we got a call from someone at the Ohio Wheelchair games telling us that Bryson's metals are in the mail and that there would also be another award in there because Bryson was awarded the Rookie of the Year for the games - how cool is that! I'm really not sure how many rookies actually competed, but I know that he is proud of himself for it and so are we.
I included some pictures and videos of the event. Bryson swam the 25 Freestyle, 50 Freestyle, 25 Backstroke, and the 50 Backstroke.