Creating a monster

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Last August, as we sat gathered around the television watching the world’s finest athletes compete in Rio, Jake announced that he would one day like to be an Olympian. 

Beth asked him what sport he would compete in.  He announced that he’d be a swimmer.  He is pretty fast in the water.  

In real life, we started thinking and Beth’s confident Jake can be involved in the Special Olympics this upcoming June in Orono.  There’s no swimming offered, but Jake is thrilled to think about running a race and winning a medal.  

To this end, he’s been working out on a semi-regular basis, and has become quite strong.  He’s 14 with an over abundance of testosterone, and I can’t seem to fill him up.  He’s turning mac and cheese and chicken nuggets into a thick chest and impressive “pipes”.  You should see him on the leg press at the gym!  

Here’s the thing.  Now that he’s buffing up, he thinks he’s Arnold Schwarzenegger. Every time I reach out for a high five, it turns into the handshake scene between Dutch and Dillon from Predator.  Every fist bump is a push struggle to see who’s stronger.  

Just the other day, he committed some minor sin, and I threatened (jokingly) to take him out.  I said I didn’t want to beat him, but that I would.  Instead of backing down, he squared his stance, puffed up his chest, and looked me straight in the eyes: “Oh yeah?  Bring it on…dramatic pause…Ryan!”  He started towards me (again, fully in on the joke).  

I had no choice but to take him to the floor and spank his butt to show him who’s in charge.  Thing is, it took much longer and more energy than I was expecting.  It used to be easier to overcome the boy and wrestle him into the ground.  I tell my kids what my dad told me.  By the time you’re old enough to take me down, I’ll be so old you’ll feel bad about it.  I’m hoping to be at least 45 before this happens, but now I’m not so sure.  😉

Note: The Special Olympics is held this year on June 10 at the University of Maine at Orono.  Come on out and cheer on my boy!  

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