My son and I are leaving our small town in southeastern United States to live for a year in a small town in southeastern France. It couldn't possibly be THAT different, right?

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Last Fencing Tournament

     We've reached the time in our exchange when everything that we do is a "last" rather than a "first."  Most of the time, we get through these events without a lump in our throats, but today was emotional.  We travelled to Aubenas (about 45 minutes from here) for Jed's last fencing tournament.  He has been looking forward to it for weeks because he wanted to impress Sam.
    He won only one match today, but he remained upbeat and competitive throughout all five.  He ended up placing 21st out of 27 competitors, and he received his first fencing medal since this was also the last tournament of the year for this particular club.
    Jed did not want the day to come to an end because he didn't want to say goodbye to his coaches, Clément and Max.  He and Sam got cards for both and a Free Gun (what else?) certificate for Clément.  We also attached a South Carolina flag pin to each card and gave them to the guys at the end of the tournament.  I could see that Jed felt like crying and so did I when when we finally said goodbye.
    It's been a wonderful year for my little boy despite the challenges that he faced in the beginning, and I am grateful to everyone who played a part in making it meaningful for him.  As we left the gym, with Jed singing a made-up song about how much he loved his medal, Sam noticed a beautiful rainbow over the mountains.  It was a nice way to end the day.

Jed's last fencing class on Wednesday.

The elimination round.

Boys with hardware.

Clément, Jed, and Max
These guys are coaches and counselors.  They had to console crying kids all day.

Jed LOVES his medal!

A proud dad moment.  


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