People normally are proud of their kids once they get 99 % in board examinations or get into some top University. Sadly, today children are treated by parents like trophies.

I’m proud of mine for being themselves even if it means going against what is thrown at them like Asthma, bullying etc. Viren (11yrs) came third in inter-school athletics Meet in 1,500 metres clocking in at 6min 11seconds (and 10 kms in the mountains in 51 mins). Harsheath (16yrs) just ran his third half marathon (21 kms) in approximately 2hrs 10min. The point is not that Viren will run 1,500 metres soon in 5min 45seconds and Harsheath half marathon in under 1hrs 45min and then go for sub 1:30. The big deal is that they raised the bar for themselves even when others didn’t give them a chance to even do what they’ve done. To me that is grit. That’s education. The rest will come along and make sense soon.

A beautiful poem by Khalil Gibran from The Prophet titled On Children sums up beautifully that our children are not our children. They come through us but not from us. Deep! Extremely deep. But most folks think they own their children and are doing a favour to them. 

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you,
And though they are with you, yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts.
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.
For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.
The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.
Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
so He loves also the bow that is stable.
— Khalil Gibran, On Children (The Prophet)

And below is my mentor who had mastered the art of presenting serious issues without offending the offenders themselves. He was considered one of the best stand up comedians. He's dead and serious! In a very comical way. 

Harsheath and Viren, stay exactly the way you guys are. You both have accomplished more in running than I had by your ages, but then running is just co-incidental. You both have more guts than I have. In any case, there is no rat race or comparison that's on.

Don't let anyone ever tell you that you are not good enough. It'll not ever come on a platter. You've got to earn it. Don't ever have a sense of entitlement. You've shown me you are tough enough to take the tougher path. Just keep at it. Never become complacent. You chaps simply do your thing. Nay-sayers are good at just one thing, at saying 'no, it can't be done'. Let them not bother you. 

Keep miling and smiling. Forever. Nothing else matters.