He wanted to win the coloring contest so badly.
He spent hours coloring the jaguar mask that matched his favorite jaguar shirt.
Watching his tiny 4 year old hand move at an excruciatingly slow pace, careful not to go out of the lines, his face getting closer and closer to the page, I wanted him to win.
When he explained his color choices to me and how the red, orange and green all had meaning, I knew he had an artist inside him. I wanted him to win.
When he asked for me to tie the mask around his head and take pictures of him as a jaguar…wow did I ever want him to win.
He is our second child, and usually in games or contests, he comes in second. Behind his older sister.
At school, they say he has a heart of gold. He lets other people win. He doesn’t want his friends to be sad.
He doesn’t get to win a lot. And it’s hard for him. Everyone wants to win sometimes.
When the contest ended, we checked the Tea Collection website and Miles did not win, but he got an honorable mention. He asked me if that meant he came in 2nd. He asked me if that was good.
I told him there was one winner and only two honorable mentions. So yes, it was like second. But more importantly, they saw how hard he worked on his beautiful mask and people outside his family loved it. They wanted to show his work to the world.
Yes, we sent it to the whole family and posted it on Facebook and made a huge deal because boy were we ecstatic.
He was beaming. He was so proud. He told me he really liked the winner’s drawing and loved all of the colors. He said “It’s okay mom, I’ll just try again.”
I was the most proud at that moment.
My son is filled with passion and creativity and perseverance…and he is also full of love.
Maybe one day he will win. He means to try month after month and has already completed a dragon for June. It doesn’t matter though.
Winning isn’t everything. Of course, it is about how we play the game. For us, we don’t ever hide the fact that in games and contests, someone wins. That’s life, and we don’t sugar coat it. We encourage healthy competition when the situation warrants it. We always stress playing fair and being supportive of others who want to win too.
So far, Miles gets it. Sure, he wants to win, but he is participating because he loves it and he cares about the other kids involved. Like I said, heart of gold.
Someday, this little guy is going to be some kind of wonderful man.
If you want to enter the monthly contest, check out Tea Collection and their Studio T Blog.