From Team CMMD teammate and Team CMMD in Training parent, Lauren Franklin:
In the summer of 2015 when the Team CMMD in Training sign up went up, I hesitated. If you knew my Henry you’d know he struggles with activities like this. He struggles to find the endurance and strength for activities like soccer, ice skating, skiing, swimming, t-ball – believe me, we’ve tried them all. But for some reason I put all that aside and signed him up.
Fast forward to the first day – that brutally hot, blazing day. It was as if all my reservations were realized. Henry sat down on the field basically refusing to participate. I tried from the side lines to encourage him, but he wasn’t having it. I was in tears. I was worried this was one more thing we were going to strike out at. At one point Christine came over to me, saw my emotion and lent a hug (which I desperately needed). We left early that day.
Later that night I thought about it and remembered the compassion and patience I saw out on the field. It was so uncomfortably hot for everyone, but all the coaches and jr. coaches were so supportive, so encouraging, so amazing. I decided to email the coaches and tell them I was committed and by default, so was Henry. I was going to bring him every week, I was going to plop him in the center of the field, and I was going to cry in the bleachers if I had to. (Coaches Robbi and Kelly both emailed me back the sweetest notes that I still have.)
But that didn’t happen. Week by week he ran longer. He ran stronger. People took care of him. So many of the coaches learned his name, took special time with him. I fell in love with Team CMMD in Training.
On the day of the mile run he was one of the last to finish, but I knew that was likely. All that mattered to me was that he gave it 100%. Kids were finishing their mile (in AMAZING times) and Coach Cari looked at me and said, “Does he have one more lap to go?” All I could do was nod yes. She told me I could run it with him (thank you Cari!) so I took his hand and we pushed through. He was going to finish! We rounded the final corner and Coach Kelly joined us. I just remember her telling him, “Do you hear that? They are cheering for YOU!” I was sobbing again, but this time for a completely different reason. The support was nothing short of breathtaking.
This year I’m signing up Henry again, and I’m thrilled that his younger brother Sam is eligible to participate as well. This program is so special. I am so happy that it exists in our community and I was able to find it for my boys. Thank you Team CMMD in Training for all that you do! Your impact on our young people is profound.