Saturday, October 24, 2009

Life Lessons: Sportsmanship.

The day started out like so many other Saturdays past.  So happy.  So excited.  So determined that *today* was going to be the day she scored her first goal.

By the fourth quarter, she was reduced to tears.  The determination was gone.  Her frustration was evident.

Her father and I both agree that today's performance was the best she's given thus far on the soccer field. She came close to scoring three times, but then was rocked to the core everytime she was denied.  I certainly understood her frustration, but it was the first time I ever actually remember being embarrassed of my child's behavior.  I was mortified. Visions of famous sports figures and their tantrums flashed in my head.  John McEnroe. Tonya Harding. Serena Williams.

The last picture in the collage above was taken seconds after the final whistle blew.  It was the end of the game and scoring had eluded her once again. My frustration was that I didn't know what words to say to her to make it better.  She asked, "Don't you want me to score a goal?"  Yes, of course.  But I also want her to have pride in having tried her best.  I want her to want to win, but I also don't want her to beat herself up or embarrass herself when she can't handle losing.

I snapped this shot twenty minutes later on the playground.  She's deep in thought. I can only guess she's thinking about her performance.  I debated whether or not to approach her.  I decided against it.

Next week, I'm slipping the opposing goalie a 10 spot and hope they let one of Barrett's slip through.


Mainly a midwife said...

Oh your poor honey...
It's hard for them to find a balance between agressive competition and "too much".
you captured every emotion in those photos.

shannon said...

I am sure she will be happy you have those pictures when she becomes the next Mia Hamm!

I love that you capture the Good, Bad, and I won't say ugly because all of your children are just gorgeous!