Just a Big Show Off

A couple of weeks ago my 7-year-old said to me, “You’re just a big show off!” We were at packet pickup for South Riding Triathlon and, as is usually the case at these events, I’d bumped into a couple of people I knew and started chatting with them. Of course I’d promised Joshua we’d be quick, and in my mind I was being quick, but to a 7-year-old I was taking forever as usual. Must be really annoying to have a mother who shows off as much as I do.

Showing off...my huge thighs

But his comment irked me, enough that I’m still thinking about it two weeks later. Am I just a big show off? Is racing showing off? Do I race so I can show off when I win stuff? I guess in a way it is, and I do. Racing – and training – require selfishness to some degree, perhaps some narcissism, even. We may say we race to show a good example to our kids, but then we spend hours away from them in training and drag them to watch us race when they have no desire to do so. Of course, we need to get away from them for everyone’s sake, and it’s better to do our getting-away in a healthy manner than by hanging out at a bar chain-smoking and getting smashed.

But now I’m thinking about other things that could be considered showing off. Am I showing off when I wear my Boston Marathon t-shirt? My car is covered in stickers that say “BQ” and “26.2” and “ultra.” Is that showing off?

It’s just as well Joshua doesn’t know I have a blog where I write about all the showing off I do.

Kids being dragged to yet another race and put to work...




  1. Lisa McClellan says:

    I think it is natural for some parents to want an identity and to have achievements outside of being a Mom. Let’s face it being a Mom can often be a thankless job, and winning or even just doing well in a race feels fantastic . I personally think it is good for the parent and good for the children as long as it’s balanced. No matter the circumstances children will learn a valuable lesson from parents who train and race.. in the end.it just may not be the lesson we had envisioned. Either way a lesson learned in my mind is always positive. I love to celebrate the achievements of my fellow parents.Often times while training or racing we learn lesson’s ourselves on being a better parent, perhaps things we would not otherwise There is such a huge parallel between the pains of training and the pains of parenting. We all know how difficult parenting can be. It’s nice to support each other and cheer each other on, I for one would miss hearing about your races, you “big show off” so keep on celebrating your achievements.

  2. I say if you got it, flaunt it. There is a difference b/t being full of yourself and being proud of your accomplishments. You work hard and have a lot ot be proud of. Never be ashamed of that. I don’t view you as “showing off,” you’re just sharing your sucesses.

  3. Ahhh, the voices of reason! Thanks Lisa and SUAR. BTW, Joshua thinks you are big show offs, too. 😉

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