Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Eye Opening Night

Tonight I had planned to get a good workout in with Junior and practice his bowling technique, but things didn't go as smooth as planned. Junior hasn't had the best past and tonight he shared a few stories with me demonstrating this. It breaks my heart to hear this innocent 15 year old talk about his hardships as if they are totally normal.

Junior was distracted tonight because somebody broke into his house the previous day. We began our session with just walking around Park Center and talking. Junior didn't want to work out right away, but we talked about other activities we could do in the warmer weather such as volunteer at the SPCA to walk dogs which he really seems interested in. I wanted to get his mind off things and just enjoy himself. We checked out some of the rec sports going on and he liked to cheer on everyone!

As we walked around he found some money on the floor. I suggested we go try to see if anyone around lost the money and Junior agreed. I was very proud to hear him agree. We asked around and nobody said they lost the money. I then suggested that if nobody claims the money, he could use the money for nights we go bowling so Junior asked me to hold the money and save it for bowling.

We eventually got to work on his bowling technique and I am happy to see that he is improving with stepping with opposition and releasing the ball with his palm up. We even made a handshake to celebrate a good shot. I used the handshake for multiple purposes; to establish a personal bond, to motivate and to use as positive reinforcement. Junior started off the night not wanting to go to the gym but in the end he was having a great time and I am seeing how important and valuable my time with Junior is. He wanted a copy of the Cortland Phys Ed Club newsletter because there was a student spotlight section about me and had my picture in it. He wanted to show it to his friends and when I heard him say that, I felt that all my time with Junior is worth every second.

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