The Bench Is Not A Fun Place …

15 Sep

You hope at the very least that they have a moment when they hear the cheer. The clapping. The loudness. You hear the woo-hoo charged with such energy and enthusiasm that it reverberates in the air.

You’ve heard it before for your kid and hoped the start of a new year on a new team, that you’d hear the roar again, at the very least from you.

But instead it was silence, frustration, and disbelief. I rubbed my forehead and face in anguish. It was painful to watch.

It was one of those times you tried to find something positive to say or remember about the performance and nothing … absolutely nothing came to mind.

I had one of those parent moments where I couldn’t believe what was happening but it was happening because my eyes were watching it, so I just sat there stunned.

I was watching everything fall apart, just completely sink. From the top of his game to being third string. As a parent and sports enthusiast it was tough to face.

He had the worst … and I mean the worst game of his life, where everything that could go wrong did. He forgot how to pass, how to shoot, how to move fast, how to defend. It’s like he had amnesia and forgot how to play the game. It hurt to watch him self-destruct.

It hurt to come to terms with the terrible plays and effort, it was disappointing to know that he was just a body out there, not making an impact at all … well … he was, but a negative one.

That’s one thing I tell both my kids … did you make an impact? Did you do better than last time?

Both answers were no.

I mean just yesterday my daughter continued making strides in her first year of soccer. The way she continues to improve as a player every game only makes me believe that we’re just scratching at the surface of her potential. I’m excited at what she can do and what’s to come for her.

My son, however, has started his journey this year at an all-time low, and I’m troubled by it. I’m having a lowly parent moment where I feel there’s nothing I can do for my kid. No matter how many pointers or words of encouragement I shout out nothing was getting through and the slump snowballed into a disastrous state of play.

It’s the first time I couldn’t see a positive. It was an epic failure and it sat there for all to watch and the oohs and ohhhs could be heard.

The performance will hang over him like a Scarlett Letter and he’ll have to dig and fight his way out. He’ll have to work twice as hard now to even earn half the time he had before. It’s slipping away.

I’m thinking maybe it’s time to rewatch Rudy, or Hoosiers, or read the sports biographies of comeback underdogs. Perhaps rewatch Nadal’s Championship match in the U.S. Open, because the bench is not a fun place if you’re an athlete. It’s not great if you’re a parent either.

This uphill battle is going to be tough. I’m wondering what Coach Taylor would say …

Buen Camino my friends…


7 Responses to “The Bench Is Not A Fun Place …”

  1. beth September 16, 2019 at 4:04 AM #

    Awww, that is so incredibly hard. I’ve been there

    • The Guat September 16, 2019 at 8:47 AM #

      Ohhhh it was a tough one. And all I could do was watch and wait for it to be over. We’ll have to find something in the equation to break through this slump. Thanks.

  2. Sorryless September 16, 2019 at 6:22 AM #

    Failure is not separate from success, it’s a part of it. These are the moments where you two can find the answers to the questions.

    Peace and love to you both

    • The Guat September 16, 2019 at 8:56 AM #

      Oh man it was a tough one from the bleachers. I remember watching Nadal’s coaches and family during the final and I completely understood their feelings. Mind you, my kid wasn’t playing in the US Open Championship but he was beating himself. I know these things happen but those kind of lapses the entire game … whoa. Definitely have to go back and figure our way out of this epic slump and build up. There’s no where else to go but up, so one step at a time, I guess. Thanks.

      • Sorryless September 16, 2019 at 10:14 AM #

        One step indeed. You fall down and you get up, and he ain’t alone when it comes to having a clunker of a game. The important thing is that he owns it, because it’s easy to blame something else. Own it, and know you can do better, because you have done better.

        • The Guat September 16, 2019 at 4:58 PM #

          Yes! Totally. Had he blamed someone or something else I would have lost it. But he knew … he said it. And you’re right at least that’s a step in the right direction. Thanks buddy 🙂

          • Sorryless September 16, 2019 at 8:43 PM #

            Hang in there. 🙂

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