intransitive verb persevered -·vered′, persevering -·ver′·ing
to continue in some effort, course of action, etc. in spite of difficulty, opposition, etc.; be steadfast in purpose; persist
This little guy amazes me. I have always know Josh is persistent ( the tantrums, the "my way or the highway" attitude, the inability to leave a task unfinished), but it always seemed to be a not so fabulous quality, at least in a little person. But he really taught me something (again) about sticking with something even when it is really, really challenging.
Three mornings a week for the past 6 weeks we have gotten up early - in time for an 8am practice for the cross country team at his school. This alone is a triumph - getting to school on time for 8:40am is a challenge most mornings, so the commitment to make the practices was a big one. He did it, though, most mornings easier than I.
And then came the Cross Country meets after school. The big races. Hundreds of kids, lots of schools, and many, many distractions. And the course seemed too far for those little legs. Would he really be able to do this - on his own, without an assistant, without getting lost, or distracted, or following a puppy off the course?
The answer is YES. He did it not once or twice, but three times. Three races in which he came 115 out of 115, 117 out of 121, and finally 118 out of 123. He didn't notice where he placed, and I didn't care. I cried - he laughed.
It wasn't easy - for a kid with an Autism Spectrum Disorder this is a huge challenge, and he was amazing. When he wanted to quit, we called him to the finish lines with cheers and whistles. Mark ran part of the way with him so he could keep going in one race, Emily cheered and ran alongside him in another. I stood amazed and proud and tearful as he crossed the finish line, with a red face and an ear to ear grin.
Perseverance - Joshua has it in spades - and he makes me want to try a little harder each day, too. Way to go, Josh - you are my champion - each and every day.