Ring That Bell

Simon At Gymnastics from Ali Edwards on Vimeo.

Today I want to share a success. Because I love celebrating Simon.

Back in May Simon started attending a weekly gymnastics class. The goal was for him to work his body and build strength. It's a class for kids with special needs and he's really enjoyed it from the beginning as long as everything goes how he wants it to go. And because it's real life, some of the social parts have continued to be a challenge for him and we're continuing to work through it (a challenge to the point where he doesn't want to participate and lays on the floor vs. doing the exercises).

Last night he experienced a major success. The kind that builds strength of both body and mind.

Since he started a few months back he's been doing a lot of the same exercises each week, including the one you see in the video above where he goes backwards over the barrel. Last night was the first time he did it all by himself, with strength in his legs to push off and strength in his arms to stop him on the other end. When he started his teacher needed to roll him over the barrel and fully support his arms so he wouldn't hit his head.

The best part was how over-the-top excited he was about mastering this skill.

"Mom!" he said, "I can't believe I'm an expert!"

And then he went right back over and did it again and again with the biggest smile on his face. I live for those smiles.

At this gym when an athlete achieves a goal or masters a significant new skill they get to go ring a bell that sounds throughout the entire gym. People stop what they are doing and clap and cheer.

Simon got to ring the bell last night and it was awesome.

Go, Simon go!

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  1. Kimmie

    2012-07-20 18:03:23 -0400

    That is SO AWESOME! And I love how we can hear Anna cheering him on in the background, too. (I think?? LOL) My Asperger's son recently started horseback riding for special needs kids to help build his strength, confidence, and ability. :)

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  2. Chris Wenzel

    2012-07-20 18:21:13 -0400

    wow, chills, what a great story, kid and mom!

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  3. Brooke

    2012-07-20 18:27:04 -0400

    Well done Simon!! It means so much more when you have to work for it.

    What a fantastic initiative of the gym to be able to ring the bell.

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  4. JeanD

    2012-07-20 18:51:35 -0400

    Go Simon!! Well done, keep persevering

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  5. ann

    2012-07-20 18:55:47 -0400

    that put a huge smile on my face! :)

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  6. Trina

    2012-07-20 18:58:31 -0400

    Way to go Simon! What a huge accomplishment!

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  7. Anthea Reid

    2012-07-20 20:51:11 -0400

    That's so cool, this brought tears to my eyes. Well done Simon.

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  8. june w

    2012-07-20 21:29:29 -0400

    Congratulations! Way to go Simon! Ring that bell. What an awesome way to share accomplishments!

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  9. Denise C.

    2012-07-20 21:39:26 -0400

    Simon Edwards I don't know you but I wish I did.
    That was the coolest thing I have ever seen.
    EXCELLENT job....keep it up.

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  10. jenr

    2012-07-20 23:16:12 -0400

    GO Simon...GO Simon.....GO Simon. That is great. Love when our kiddos make big steps and leaps. I know he was proud!

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  11. Alecia A.

    2012-07-21 00:42:08 -0400

    Love this!!!! Way to go Simon! So proud! And wouldn't it be great if we all carried bells ... and all stopped to celebrate others triumphs!?

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  12. KarynS

    2012-07-21 02:21:24 -0400

    That is awesome Simon, way to go buddy!

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  13. Alida

    2012-07-21 03:31:17 -0400

    AWESOME indeed! Well done Simon!

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  14. poupee

    2012-07-21 06:47:03 -0400

    Ali, you deserve a big round of applause too--for being such a pround and supportive mom!!! Great job Simon.

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  15. Mel

    2012-07-21 06:57:56 -0400

    So happy for Simon! What a sweet story. PS- Just started following you on Pinterest, aka I pretty much pinned all of your 'words' pins! Great inspiration.

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  16. Kimberlee

    2012-07-21 09:38:26 -0400

    Yay!!!! That makes my heart smile. :) So excited for Simon (and you). I love reading these stories.

    My nephew is 3 1/2 and was recently assessed. It was confirmed that he has Autism, but he still has to go through an "official" diagnosis. Your blog is the first place I told my sister about when we were suspecting that was the case because I wanted her to know that, even though they'll face challenges, there are so many things to be happy about. You have always been an inspiration to me, and I hope that my little sis can share in that too.

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  17. Claire

    2012-07-22 01:31:31 -0400

    Hurray for Simon. I am clapping too.

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  18. kate adderley

    2012-07-22 04:02:38 -0400

    well done Simon,

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  19. Belinda

    2012-07-22 10:31:38 -0400

    Thank you for sharing such great news about Simon. I feel like I have watched him grow via all your posts and love to see the progress he has made. You are doing a wonderful job with him. So I am ringing the virtual bell for you via my message since mom's rarely ring the bell for themselves.

    I was so inspired by this post that I have started research to find a similar program for my son. Thank you for sharing such a lovely story.


    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  20. Michelle B

    2012-07-22 10:39:28 -0400

    That is so awesome!! Way to go Simon! I have noticed that Simon seems tall and slim, I have a tall and slim boy myself - I am having a heck of a time find athletic pants (not jeans) for him that are slim enough in the waist and long enough - have you found any good fitting brands for Simon? How about the hanna andersson pants have you tried those?

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  21. sarah

    2012-07-22 14:19:35 -0400

    Awesome Simon!! I love that you can hear Anna cheering in the background. Love when sibs support each other at a young age.

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  22. Katrina H

    2012-07-22 20:28:42 -0400

    Way to go Simon! That's awesome!!

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  23. Nina Chow

    2012-07-23 17:22:25 -0400

    that is so great Ali, thanks for sharing

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  24. Project Life 2012 | Week Twenty-Nine | Ali Edwards

    2012-08-02 19:07:55 -0400

    [...] included one 6×12 insert this week that features my post “Ring That Bell” on the front (about Simon’s accomplishment at gymnastics). I used one of my 6×12 Words [...]

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
  25. Gabriella

    2012-10-07 01:49:46 -0400

    and now you've made me cry. :) GO, SIMON!

    * edited 08/11/14 07:50AM
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