Thursday, January 20, 2011

National Junior Disability Championships 2010 - Chicago

Well, I have to add a disclaimer to the beginning of this post.  This is all second hand information for me.  As most of you know my husband Beau is a youth pastor and long before we knew anything about the NJDC we had planned a mission trip with our youth group that very same week.  We wanted Bryson to be able to go to the nationals when we found out about it but knew we could not go ourselves.  My parents were going to be watching our kids during the mission trip so we asked Beau's parents if they would be interested in taking Bryson to the nationals.  They were more then willing - which we are so thankful for - so any pictures and information I have came from them. 

Getting there & arriving at Chicago

Long drive - but nothing a little DS won't help!

 The loot from the welcome bag!

Activities for the athletes to experience & enjoy


pretty sure he was showing off his muscles

It sounded to me like these experiences and the new relationships he made were worth the trip in itsself.  The competition was just secondary.  These are the parts I wish I could've been there to see.  I could see him swim anytime but these moments seem priceless.  You take a kid who all year gets to see very few other kids that are like him and then put him in a place where he sees other kids like him and he just blossoms.  You can just see the joy and excitement on his face.  Really I can't wait to get to take him this summer.

The Opening Ceremony

Bryson's team that was there for the ceremony "Wayne County Wildcats"

Parade of athletes - check out Bryson - he is forgetting to stay with his team.

Just love how excited and proud he looks - I'm sure around here nobody even noticed his leg.

 Bryson with some of the other athletes enjoying the performance
This was the Jesse White Tumbling Team - Bryson was pretty impressed!

New Friends!

The Competition

Like I told you before, the competition really became secondary.  From what I hear Bryson was a little tired and really didn't have his best times.  I saw the videos and he even looked a little sluggish.  It was a whole different atmosphere at these competitions compared to what he was used to.  He had weird practice times, races in the evenings (late for Bryson) and he would have to be alone waiting for his turn for a long time - only coaches and swimmers were allowed by the pool so the grandparents were up in the stands.  He had his DS to keep him company but it also became a little of a distraction from what I hear.  That being said, even though his times were slower he was able to place in the nationals.  Here's what he got:
25 M back - 2nd place
25 M Free - 1st place
50 M back - 2nd place
50 M free - 2nd place
Not bad for his first nationals!  It will be fun to see how he improves this year.  Just the maturity and the growth of his body will be a huge advantage from where he was during this competition.  Again this year we only let Bryson compete in the swimming competitions because we didn't know what he would be able handle, but there really are so many more events he could be participating in.  Hopefully we will get him into some of the track and field events this year.  I'm sure it would be a huge confidence booster for him to be able to race against people with his same abilities.

Experiencing a basketball wheelchair - looks like he enjoyed it.
Playing soccer with his new friend.  His new friend had no legs or arms, but Bryson wasn't about to cut him any slack and I don't think the guy wanted him to.  Pretty cool!

Dressed in his pjs and ready to head back to Ohio

My favorite picture from the week - man I love this guy!


Anonymous said...

ok, so I know that these were forever ago but I hadn't seen them yet. barry and brenda took great pictures and I loved looking at them. I could not help but cry. We loved going to see him compete at Ohio state. can't wait to watch again!

Anonymous said...

You are so right. The swimming was secondary to the fun and friendships. We had as much fun as Bryson. Grandma and Grandpa Hummel

Anonymous said...

Its very good way to encourage disable boys.
Sport Socks

twin power mommy ♥ said...

What great pictures.
Such a precious boy you have! I remember when he had his accident (friends with JoEllen and remember her blogging about it) and everyone was worried for how he would cope with having a prosthetic.
I would hafta say he not only copes...but thrives.
Such a determined young man you have on your hands.