When you’re a parent, you hope for a lot of things for your child. You hope your child will be born healthy. You hope your child will grow up happy. You hope your child will be smart and self-confident. You hope that whatever is thrown their way in life, your child will come out of it on the other side better and stronger because of it. You hope your child will turn out to have a life better than yours. You hope that when your child goes out in the world all of those little lessons you taught him or her stick and they do the right things…especially when you’re not looking. You do the best that you can as a parent, but in the end, you do “hope” a lot.
Today, I got to smile at one of my “hopes” coming back to me.
As I set out to pick my daughter up from her after-care program at school, I texted her and said “On my way. Be there in five minutes. Be ready please”. In return, I got her typical “K” response. (Yes, she still does that to me daily.) When I got there, I could see her on the far side of the room, seated with two other kids, playing a game. When I finally got her attention, she gave me her “just a minute” gesture, and I had to stand there making idle chit-chat with the ladies who run the program. That “just a minute” was more like five minutes, and I could feel myself getting antsy because I had things to do. As she finally gets up from the table, I see her pat the boy she was sitting next to on the back as she says goodbye, but I didn’t think anything of it.
When we get in the car, I say “How come you weren’t ready to go today?”, and then I get the whole story. It turns out that she was seated at the table with a boy she has known since she was three years old, whom she went to preschool with. He has Autism. He is beyond smart, but socially and behaviorally, he struggles.When she was three, she had a hard time understanding him but it didn’t take her long to get it and accept it. He has come an incredibly long way since he was three, and I smile whenever I see him because his progress is quite amazing. The problem is other kids, especially those who don’t really know him, don’t quite “get” him or his outbursts. Luckily, my daughter does…and she has always been his friend.
She tells me that the reason she wasn’t ready is because she was sitting with her friend playing a game. She said that this is what she does every time she goes to aftercare and he is there, so he doesn’t have to sit alone or get picked on by other kids. Then she launches into a mini-tirade about how she hates when other kids tease him, and how she sticks up for him…even if he’s not around. She tells the other kids that they are ridiculous and maybe if they would stop for a second and get to know or understand him or his disability, then they’d be ashamed of how they have treated him. (She also throws in lines like “By the way, he’s super smart. Maybe he’s just too smart for you!” Atta girl!!) She proudly tells me that the other kids are finally starting to leave him alone, especially when she’s with him, and she says it in such a staunch manner that I want to stop the car and hug her as tight as I can. Instead, I pat her on the leg and tell her that I am proud of her for being a good person with a good heart. I tell her that I am proud that she stands up for others, even if it goes against “popular” opinion, because she’s saying what’s “right”…and I drive the rest of the way home with a smile on my face, hiding the tears in my eyes behind my sunglasses.
I have to say, in the past 11 years I have been there to see plenty of things my daughter has done that have made me proud…but one of the things I am most proud of is what she did today and what she has been doing…when I wasn’t looking.
Last week we got our 10 1/2 year old daughter a cell phone. (If you don’t say the 1/2 part, she gets really mad!) Thanks to that, I now want to throw MY cell phone through a wall. Not because I am jealous that she has a better phone than I do…even though she does..damn you great deal when you add a new line…but because she texts me non-stop. That child texts me so much that I cringe when I hear my phone go off, and I had to give her a separate text alert sound so I could differentiate between her and my friends, who might actually have something important to tell me…as opposed to her.
Now before you start rolling your eyes and thinking “Why would you get your 10 1/2 year old a cell phone?”, let me explain. We did not just hand her a phone for no reason. She had to completely earn it. We made a deal with her back in September: She had to get straight A’s for the entire year, and she had to show responsibility by not misplacing her I-Pod at all. (Plus she is getting to that age where she isn’t at my side all the time, so it’s handy.) She kept up her end of the deal, so we kept up ours….and now it is coming back to haunt me…just about every 5-10 minutes of my life.
Here are some examples of what I get to read when I hear that ominous tone chime on my phone:
*Mom, thank u for getting me a phone. I <3 U!!!xoxo Ok – This was her very 1st text to me, so it made me smile. After that it all went downhill…fast. (By the way, her very first actual call HAD TO be to her father. Of course it did. Sigh.)
*Mom, I need my hula hoop right now! This gem came a mere 10 minutes after I dropped her off at school…even though I had just asked her before we left if she was going to need said hula hoop…and she said no.
* Where r u? I get this constantly. I usually get this 2-3 times while I am driving to pick her up at her friend’s house. (Thank God for text to talk!) More often than not though, the answer is “downstairs”. We don’t live in a mansion, so I don’t know how she thinks she will lose me in “the other wing of the house”, but whatever.
* I am almost there! Wow, am I glad she only had her phone for the last 3 days of school, because this is the text I got for the entire bus ride home. Literally stop by stop! It’s her little version of the play-by-play of her life. Meanwhile, I was already sitting at the bus-stop for like 10 minutes.
*This movie is great! U have to see it! I’ll go again, and not spoil it for u. Promise! She sent me this when she went to see Madagascar 3 yesterday. I told her she wasn’t supposed to use her phone in the theater, but the movie was SO GOOD that I just HAD TO know.
* Hi!!! Just another reason to use her phone. She has said “Hi!!” to me more in the past week than she has in perhaps her entire existence on this planet. If I had $1 for every “Hi!!!” I’ve gotten, I could probably buy myself something pretty decent.
*What r u doing? Maybe she thinks I’m doing something spectacular when I am not within her field of vision. I’m not. I really want to answer “Cringing because I just heard that friggin’ chime go off AGAIN!”, but I just answer with “Nothing. Just waiting for a text from you! ” I always have to follow that up with “What r u doing?” and she usually replies, “Nothing. Just texting you!” Sometimes she puts cute little hearts in there too, which makes it impossible to get mad at. She’s a smart cookie.
* K. This is where I had to speak to her. My daughter LOVES to send the answer “K” to my responses. When she asks me anything and I respond, this is what I get back in return…whether it applies or not. She was even responding “K” to my “K”. I had to explain to her that when I say “K”, she does not need to respond with “K”. It means “I got it and the conversation is over on my end!”…therefore she does NOT need to let me know that she too is done responding! She’s not really listening to me on that one yet. Maybe if I text it to her, she’ll get it.
Aside from her numerous texts, I also get lots of pictures that she takes…like close ups of my dog’s nose with “Isn’t he the cutest???” written under it…or pictures of her toes correctly labeled “My Toes!!!! ” God Bless this child and her new phone. I don’t know how she has lived this long without it, or how I have made it through my days without Instagram pictures from my own little Ansel Adams.
What I do know is her getting a cell phone is just another little piece of her “little girl-ness” evaporating. I think starting today, I will smile everytime that ominous chime goes off on my phone, because before I know it texting her friends will be a thousand times more fun than texting her mom is… and thought of that makes me cringe more than hearing that text alert tone ever will.
Thank you…two simple words that are easy to say and mean so much.
This Memorial Day weekend, I came across veterans sitting in front of the Wawa collecting for disabled vets. I have NEVER in my life passed by those men without making a donation, even if I have gone into the store on multiple occasions over the course of the weekend. In fact, I have amassed quite a few poppies over the past few days thanks to them. Aside from always donating, I always make sure I look those men in the eyes and say “Thank you for your service”. If you have never done that when donating, you really need to. Those men appreciate a thank you just as much, if not more than the donation itself. It always makes them smile and sometimes even makes them teary eyed. They deserve every single thank you that they get, and then some if you ask me. When I see people walk by them like they are invisible, it actually disgusts me. If you don’t have any money to donate, a simple thank you is what they deserve at the very least.
Also this weekend, the volunteer firemen were doing their drive by fundraiser by standing at the entrance of the Shop Rite parking lot. On my way out, I stopped to make a donation and thanked the man for his volunteer service. He actually did a double take, smiled, and thanked me for saying that. He said no one had ever said to him before. As I pulled away, I was pretty shocked. How could no one have ever said thank you to him before? That bothered me, as did the many cars that drove right by him without making a small donation. My father was a paid fireman in North Jersey. I hope people stopped to thank him once in a while for what he did for them.(I’m going to have to ask him about that!)
Today on the way to my parents house, we drove past a coin toss for a different volunteer fire company. My daughter had never seen that before, but happily scooped out a bunch of change I had in the car. I slowed almost to a stop so she could throw it out the window at the target. The firemen all smiled, waved, and yelled thank you to us. As I drove away, my daughter remarked how happy the firemen seemed that we donated, and smiled at how they had so heartily thanked us…then noted that no one else had slowed down and done the same….and it bothered her too. On the way home we passed them again, and once again I slowed down so she could throw a big handful of change at the other target. This time they beeped the fire truck horn at us, smiled, and yelled thank you. Sadly, again she noted that no one else had slowed down and thrown their change. She said she hoped that we weren’t the only people that participated in the coin toss, because in her words, “It’s just not right.” I assured her that we weren’t but she didn’t seem very convinced that too many other people had tossed some coins, despite the signs preceding it for about a mile.
If I have taught my daughter anything in life, it is the value of “thank you”. Every time she sees a veteran collecting or anyone in a military uniform, she thanks them for their service. When she sees the firemen or ambulance squad doing their fundraising, she always says thank you for volunteering as she makes her donation too. I’ve taught her that anyone who makes a sacrifice for others should hear a thank you from the public. It’s a shame when a 10 year old knows better than the adults she sees around her…but I am pleased that she notices it and points out that it’s wrong. Tomorrow she is excited to go to the Memorial Day parade in town, so she can wave at the veterans and give thanks to them. I hope there is a decent crowd on hand, for her sake and theirs. It’s a sign of respect these men and women deserve, but often don’t receive enough.
To all of the men and women who currently serve or have served this country, I wholeheartedly say THANK YOU for your sacrifice. (Thank you to the Police Officers, Firemen, and EMTS too!) My daughter and I appreciate your service.
Thank you…two simple words that are easy to say and mean so much.
Don’t forget to use them as often as possible. Those two simple words matter.
I thought I taught her well. I really did. However this week all of my good teaching came to a screeching halt when I purchased the hideous sneakers shown above for my daughter. They are hurting your eyes, aren’t they? Mine too.
In case you are as unaware as I was just a few days ago, these are Osiris sneakers…the sneakers everyone is wearing right now. Well everyone who’s a kid, thankfully.
I was browbeaten into buying these gems because of a deal we have made with her. If she brings home straight A’s on her report card, she can get or do something of her choosing. (Before anyone raises their eyebrows at this, we aren’t “bribing” our child to get A’s. She loves school, and the fact that we only have one child allows us to do this. If we had more, it wouldn’t occur this way, trust me.) Anyway, in the past she was wanted simple things like dinner at her favorite restaurant, a night at the movies, some arts and crafts stuff, and these little silly Squinkee toys. None of those I had a problem with. However, this time it went haywire because this is what she came up with.
As I stated, I was completely unaware of what these were just a few days ago. (I wish I was still unaware!) She came home thrilled to show us her report card, and promptly stated that she already knew what she worked for last marking period: A pair of Osiris sneakers. I should have known something was up when she emphatically stated that they were the awesome sneakers everyone was wearing, but apparently my mom radar was temporarily disconnected for a minute there, and I said “I guess so, but if they cost a mint, you’re not getting them!”. Off to the computer we went, so she could show me what they looked like and we could research where we could buy them. When the images of them came up, I hoped she was kidding…she wasn’t. I asked her what said sneakers would even match, and she said “They always match if you have the right headbead onnnn!” Sigh.
I tried everything to dissuade her from wanting these clown shoes, because like I said, I thought I had taught her well. For a 10 year old, she has always had really good taste in clothes and shoes. She loves to get dressed up, and really loves to perfectly accessorize her outfits. (She gets that from her grandmother, and I’m not complaining). She loves Kohls because she can go there with her gift cards and clean up on her purchases. So how did this happen? I believe it’s because she’s 10 and finally hit the “everyone-has-them” phase. Again, sigh.
Since a deal is a deal, I begrudgingly take her to Journeys in the mall (which I had to ask my friends where it even was) to get them. She wasn’t kidding when she proclaimed them the “it” shoe, because the store was crowded with other girls around her age clamoring for these “awesome” sneakers. Since I’m such a crowd and people person, this venture was already torturous within the first 20 seconds.
That moment was perhaps the first time in my life I have ever seen a wall full of ugly. You couldn’t miss this section of the store, because even the clamoring crowd of girls couldn’t deflect the gaudy colors on display. My eyes and head hurt just looking at them. My daughter proudly waded her way through the other girls to get front and center to make her selection. The only thing I can say is she picked the least ugly of the bunch, so I guess I was remotely proud of her for that.
I had the girl measure her foot, and in her mind having a size 8 1/2 is a double bonus because “That’s the size you wear Mom! You can even borrow them if you want!”.
#2: Her feet really need to stop growing!
(I did teach her well though.)
The girl brings them out and they are unlaced, and the laces are like 2 feet long. I am now sweating and just want to get the hell out of there, so I just start lacing them up. It was then that I learned that I committed a huge faux-pas, as stated by my daughter’s look of shock and her stern whisper of “Mommmmmm! What are you doingggg? That’s not how you lace themmmm! I can’t try them onnnn like thatttt!” She was literally acting like all of the lights in the store just went out except for the spotlight that’s on me and my faux-pas lacing techniques, thus alerting the world to her Mom’s uncool moment. I glanced over at the Wall of Ugly and saw that they needed to be laced in the skater, box-lace style. Well, guess what? I made her try on one the uncool way and had her try the other one on without laces. There’s no way I was standing there sweating and re-lacing everything…sorry. In the end, they fit and I bought them. They were even on sale…$20 off. They should be paying me to take those hideous things, but whatever.
When we got home, she ran in the house to proudly show her father the world’s greatest sneakers, and also to lament that “Mom doesn’t even know how to lace them right!”. Of course my husband, the Savior of the House, does know how to lace them right because in the 80′s he was every bit as awesome as he is now, and he laced his sneakers that way. I try to save face by stating I wouldn’t know how to lace shoes like that because my awesome Jellies shoes from the 80′s didn’t even have laces, but as usual, no one is listening.
So, Alyssa is officially allowed back in the Land of Coolness because she owns a pair of Osiris sneakers. I don’t foresee myself ever enjoying seeing them on her feet. My friend’s husband had a great line for her though when they bought a pair for their child. “You’re not the one wearing them!”. True, but I will be the one walking next to her when she is wearing them.
And so it begins…
I can’t help but chuckle at all of the people on Facebook and in the media lamenting Whitney Houston’s death. They all feel “so horrible” and “so sad” about her “untimely passing”. Well guess what? I don’t. Not an ounce of me feels bad and I refuse to apologize for my stance on this too.
I can credit my parents for my complete lack of sympathy for anyone who chooses to ruin their life with drugs. Growing up, my dad went out of his way every chance he got to not only tell us that drugs ruin people’s lives, but he would show us too. A few times a year, he would drive us over to the Bronx and let us see how other people lived. That was in the 70′s when the Bronx was in its poverty heyday. (Watch Fort Apache, The Bronx if you don’t know what I’m talking about.) He would drive us through neighborhoods where people had cardboard for windows, half of the buildings were abandoned, graffiti was everywhere, and junkies roamed the streets. He would slow down and say “Do you see that? If you do drugs, that’s how you are going to live! It’s pretty cold in the winter when you have cardboard windows”. He would drive us past the Bronx Detention Center, where I still remember the inmates being able to yell out the windows. He would say “They can’t go to a Yankee game like we are because they are locked up for drugs.” Drugs over the Yankees? Never!
He also taught this lesson close to home, every chance he got. He would comment every time we drove past the park by my house and saw people were sniffing glue out of paper bags. Again, he would slow down and say “Do you see that? If you want to ruin your life and be homeless, then sniff glue like that guy is doing! You will melt your brain and definitely won’t live in our house. You can live at the park with that guy instead!”. Living in the park with glue sniffers never sounded very appealing to me. Neither did cardboard windows or a half melted brain. In fact, all of his examples scared the sh*t out of me! Thus I never did drugs.
I don’t raise my daughter any differently than my parents raised me. This morning she came downstairs and asked if I was sad because someone named Whitney Houston died. I told her “Absolutely not!” and used it as an example of drugs completely ruining someone’s life. I told her all about what a great singer she used to be, and let her hear some of her songs. Then I showed her the picture in the paper of her from one day ago, all sweaty and drugged out, and told her that Daddy and I don’t have any sympathy for people who choose to destroy their lives and throw their gifts away, and neither should she! This isn’t a new topic for her. I have also let her see parts of Celebrity Rehab and Intervention so she can see what a disaster drugs are on people’s lives. I have friends that have told me that perhaps that’s a little much, but I don’t think it is. My parents went out of their way to make sure I never did drugs by showing me examples, and I hope for the same outcome by showing my daughter the same things every chance I get. I hope I am scaring the sh*t out of her, and that someday she does the same to her kids!
So there it is…my two cents. I’m not being holier than thou. If people want to destroy their lives using drugs, that’s their choice…but there will be no sympathy coming from me. I don’t feel sorry for Joe Schmo drug addict and I don’t feel sorry for Whitney Houston either.
PS – Thanks Mom and Dad!
This morning my daughter realized that her “beloved” pet Hermy was dead. I can’t say he died with much dignity. She found him naked in the middle of his cage, a few inches from his old shell, and nowhere near his spare, bigger shell that we thought maybe he would switch to someday.
Funny thing about this is I just asked her yesterday how her pal Hermy was doing, and her very paused response told me that yet again she forgot all about the poor bastard. This is the same child who literally begs us every single summer to get her a new hermit crab or two when we go to Fantasy Island in LBI. Every year I cringe when my husband and daughter happily stroll into the shop to make her yearly purchase. I know how it’ll end for the little innocent creature(s) she brings home, but nobody ever listens to me…I do need to mention that we did not buy her Hermy. She conned her grandparents into it one night when they were watching her. Mama didn’t raise no dummy.
Anyway, Hermy is officially the 12th hermit crab taken down by “The Hermit Crab Slayer” (What we affectionately call our daughter.) It always starts out great. She will give him (It’s always a him for some reason) some well thought out name, take fantastic care of him for about a week, and then it’s all downhill. The other 11 that she has owned didn’t make it very far past 2 weeks…maybe a month tops. This one went the distance in our house.
Thus today marked the end for our pal Hermy. (Technically he could have been dead for about a week, and my daughter just didn’t notice, but for all intents and purposes we will just stick with today.) I salute you Hermy…you almost made it a full 6 months…key word being almost. Unfortunately almost only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades, so you will be joining the other 11 in our hermit crab cemetery, otherwise known as the spot to the right of the rose bushes in our yard. Ya did good kid. Well, ya did better than the other 11, at least…
If anyone had asked me 10+ years ago if I had a fulfilled life, I would have said yes. I would have had no other reason to think differently. I had a great job, a great husband, and didn’t really want for anything. On October 30th, 2001 at exactly 4:25am, I learned that I had been terribly wrong about that. It was at that precise moment that I learned what it meant to truly be fulfilled…when I first laid eyes on that beautiful 6 pound, 13 ounce miracle we had made: Alyssa Nicole.
Today she is 10…Double Digits…and I find it hard to believe. I feel like I just heard her cry for the first time. I feel like the nurses just handed her to us for the first time, all swaddled up, so Rob and I could marvel in amazement at this perfect little being who was now our whole world. I feel like we just counted her fingers and toes. How could that possibly have been ten years ago?
In the past ten years, she has taught me more than any book or other person ever has. She has taught me what it feels like to have one person to be the center of my entire universe. She has taught me to be a better person. She has taught me how to be stronger than I could ever imagine. She has taught me to have patience when I need it the most, and want to the least. She has taught me to look at the world through her eyes in that innocent way that I had forgotten all about before she reminded me. Most of all, she has taught me that time flies by faster than I had ever noticed before. I wish she could teach me how to make it stop…or at least slow it down a little.
She is our only child. Over the years she has asked why, and the best response I can give her is that we got it right the first time. I truly mean those words when I say them to her. To us, she has been everything we could hope for: smart, kind-hearted, caring, funny, confident, and determined. We have watched her grow up for the past ten years with pride, and we can only hope the next ten years are just as wonderful.
What she doesn’t know is the tiny bit of sadness that I feel every time she reaches a new accomplishment. Every “first” for her is also a “last” for me. Since she is it for us, we only get those little joys once: first cry, first tooth, first day of school…even her first hit in a softball game. As she has gotten older, she asks why I make a big deal over what are seemingly tiny things that she does for the first time. Well, that’s exactly why…but she doesn’t need to know that. As long as she knows she has two parents who will always be there to celebrate her firsts, both big and small, I’m content.
So here she is…TEN. Technically a “Tween”, I guess. It’s tough on me, but it’s a really big deal for her. So today we will celebrate her birthday, make a bigger deal out of this birthday than any other, watch her blow out 10 candles and gleefully open her gifts…and tonight when she is asleep, I will tiptoe into her room and stare at her in amazement…just like I did 10 years ago…feeling fulfilled… because SHE is my greatest gift.
I am starting to think that I need to quit my job and just become a psychic, because I have gotten damn good at predicting my day. I had yesterday nailed from the second my eyes opened, unfortunately. Well, for the most part, at least…
Yesterday was my daughter’s big Girl Scout Troop reward day…you know for selling a zillion cookies this Spring. It may have been a nice reward for the girls, but for me…not so much. I am a germ-freak, and they could not have picked a better place for me to have my skin crawl all day long than an indoor water park. Yes, that’s right, we went to an INDOOR water park on a beautiful July day, which was an hour west of the beautiful Jersey Shore that we reside at. There are 2 very nice water parks about 20 minutes from my house that are OUTDOORS, but when you are 9, an indoor park far, far away sounds so much better.
My first grand prediction was that this place was going to be mobbed with a bunch of inner city day-campers because it’s not so far from the Philadelphia area. Correcto-mundo, as the Fonz would say. To make it even better, as we were standing outside waiting to get in, a van from a teen correctional facility rolls up. Guess it was reward day for them too, huh? Outstanding start, and we weren’t even through the doors yet. In all fairness, I have to say that the hundreds of day-campers and the felons on a free pass were actually quite well behaved…and even if they weren’t, I wouldn’t have noticed because I was too busy being grossed out.
My second grand prediction was that I would be grossed out. When we got inside, the place seemed pretty clean to me. In fact, the smell of cholorine was so overwhelming that it made my eyes burn a little. I was pretty happy with that, so I ventured down 2 slides and then down the lazy river a time or two. By the second time, the lazy river started packing in, and upon closer inspection, the water wasn’t nearly as sparkly clean as I thought, and there were some really hot spots, if you know what I mean. It was then that I started to itch and needed to get out immediately. I spent the next 3 or so hours scratching my legs like it was my job. If I had steel wool, I would have used that. My venturing into the water was done for the day, but my daughter’s wasn’t – so I spent the next few hours watching her happily splash around while I scratched my skin even harder…I’d have scratched hers too, if she would have let me.
With time to kill, I didn’t have much to do besides people watch, in between keeping an eye on my daughter. I saw some outstanding things like kids squatting over the jet fountains that come out of the floor, as if they were bidets. There was a slide that had some sort of “soapy foam” at the bottom for the kids to splash land in. I beg to differ on the soapy part, but whatever. Also, the lazy river got about about lazy as it could possibly get. It become a log jam…a dirty, putrid log jam.
The only thing that got me even remotely excited about this day (besides the thought of eventually getting home and taking a Silkwood shower) was the picture I saw at the entrance that beckoned me. This place had a bar!!! Yes, a bar! That picture of the frosty Pina Colada made me smile because I knew I could happily sit and sip one while my child swam in germ-laden waters and we could both be happy. When I got inside, this is what I saw:
WHY?!?!?!? Why in the name of all things right in the world would the bar be CLOSED??? Damn you management who think the bar should only be open on Friday nights! That is illogical thinking to the highest degree! Alcohol kills germs!!! If I have to be at your God-foresaken indoor petri dish of a waterpark, then your bar should not mock my life by being closed…but closed it was. So,I just sat staring at it, scratching my itchy legs in defeat.
Luckily a thunderstorm started approaching at around 3:00 (Thank you Weather-Gods) and I was able to extract my daughter from the chlorine swamp, and reason with her that I didn’t want to drive in a storm. She’s pretty sensible, and was starting to scratch her legs as well…so we were outta there.
I love my daughter, but that will be her last visit to any indoor waterpark. Outdoor ones seem so much less germy to me.Of course, when I take her to the one she loves before summer ends, I may have a different opinion…and sadly, it doesn’t have a bar.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my daughter and will do anything for her…but is it bad that a little piece of me is filled with glee that she probably won’t be playing soccer this fall? The Gestapo that runs the league said she can play if there’s room when she puts the teams together…Jeez, how nice of her. It’s kind of my fault that this happened because I forgot to sign her up by the required date. When I called the next day to ask if I could still sign her up, that was the answer I got.
Initially I was angry…I mean, really…that woman is a little power happy about running the twp. soccer league. It’s not exactly brimming with 7 year olds. In fact, last season she usually had a whopping 4 other kids on her team per game…and there were only 3 other teams for them to play …but I digress.
Like I said, I was initially angry…but then when I thought about it, the glee started to creep in…I’M FREE!!!
You see, I’m the anti-soccer mom. At games, I stand off in the corner of the field away from the other parents, because I think most of them are absolutely insane!!! I am amazed at these crazy people who live vicariously through their 7 year olds every Saturday morning.
Have you ever been to a 7 year old child’s soccer game? If not, let me set the scene for you, because it’s the same thing every week – a small group of kids huddle around a ball, kicking viciously at it, while it bounces off all of them one by one. If this happens long enough, there is then the ensuing cloud of dust that obscures your view for a few seconds. Eventually the ball pops out, and they chase it like a herd of thundering elephants. Sometimes it makes it into the goal, because the poor little goalie looks like a deer in headlights..but more often then not, it just goes out of bounds a thousand times. You could set your watch by it, trust me.
Anyway, that I can put up with…because they’re little kids and it is kind of cute. It’s the lunatic parents that make me the anti-soccer mom that I am. First of all, everyone there delusionally thinks their child is the second coming of Mia Hamm. Newsflash time people…that is not the case. I actually heard a parent say one day, “When my daughter grows up, she wants to be a professional soccer player. I know that she will be just that.” Ummm, I’ve watched your daughter play…and you might want to guide her in a different direction.
That’s a prime example of what I’m talking about. These parents are wayyyy too into it for my liking. Is it necessary to scream “Kick the ball!” 700 times in a one hour span? Why are grown men and women running up and down the sideline screaming and frantically pointing to which direction the goal is in to their kids? Why would you scream at the 15 year old kid who’s reffing the game about “missed calls”? How can you be THAT happy when the opposing goalie misses the ball and then jump up and down like your child’s team just won the World Cup? It literally takes every ounce of my being to not run on the field and make the grand announcement that these kids are 7 YEARS OLD and it is TOWNSHIP SOCCER! I am convinced I am the only person there who actually remembers that little fact.
Will I miss watching my daughter happily run up and down the field every Saturday morning…usually having no idea what soccer really is…but enjoying the hell out of it anyway? Yes!
Will I miss wanting to rip my ears off my head so I don’t have to listen to the shrieking parents on the other side of the field? Not so much.
That’s ok though…because she’s going to start softball in the Spring, and I have a feeling there will be similarities.