mamma bear

Friday, October 12, 2012

cee had soccer practice this evening. jay had friends to play with on the playground, so i plopped into my blue canvas soccer mom chair and had a great time watching practice...for the first three minutes.

then it became glaringly obvious that there was a kid on cee's team who was mouthing off to her any chance he got. for the next twenty-seven minutes, i sat and listened to him pick at her, talk back to the coach, and call her a loser.

i tried to be calm and objective in my observations:
was he the only kid acting like that? (yes)
was he picking on all the kids, or just cee? (just cee)
did cee seem annoyed? (highly)
was it only bothering me? (no)

more than anything, i kept wondering why nobody was asking the kid to close his mouth or use some manners. turns out he is the coach's kid. at this point, i was happy to see that a) they were going to scrimmage boys against girls and b) this boy was going to be the goalie. by me.

for the next thirty minutes, i listened to him boo her, call her a dumb girl, and call her an idiot; and even though i was fuming by this point, i was proud of the three goals cee scored.

by the time practice was over, i was about to pop. cee came running off the field, saw my face, and asked what was wrong. i told her i was going to talk to her coach. she asked, 'mamma bear?'

i said yes. she said, 'i'll be on the playground.'

i really do try to reserve my mamma bear moments for special occasions, and in the nearly ten years i've been a mom, i can count my mamma bear moments on one hand.

photo credit
but first of all, please do not attempt to make shallow excuses for your child's behavior or blame it on adhd. as a teacher, i would never allow a child to talk to another child that way in my classroom, period. and when i'm paying for my child to participate in a league where sportsmanship and teamwork are the emphasis, i will have very little patience with your excuses. furthermore, there's a huge difference between adhd and disrespect. one is a medical condition, the other is not. one can be tempered with medicine, the other can be rectified with positive parenting.

second of all, please do not tell me that you will address this with your child because cee's a really good player. when you do this, you're implying that if she wasn't good you wouldn't want her on your team and you're implying that your kid's behavior would be somewhat acceptable to subject on a lesser player.

and finally, whenever your kid is treating another kid poorly, call him on it. i promise i'll do the same with my children...i expect a lot from my girls, and i make that very clear to them. whenever i see them slip, we simply talk about it, discuss the behavior and why it's wrong, and we brainstorm ways to handle similar scenarios in the future. it's not rocket science, it's parenting.

i was raised in a home that allowed me to be tacky and rude to others when i was growing up. i was rarely punished for it, and nobody every talked to me about why my actions were wrong. to say i learned these lessons the hard way would be a tremendous understatement. as a parent, i vowed to never let my own children down by side stepping those difficult conversations. the rules of life are pretty simple: be nice. treat others how you want to be treated. make good choices. be a positive example for others.

nobody is perfect, and i appreciate that in people. imperfection can be breathtaking, beautiful, and precious. i appreciate it in myself, and i appreciate in these two. if i don't take up for them, who will?

alright, i will step off of my soapbox now. enjoy your friday evening...



Mama O. said...

Bon. Qui. Qui. JFTB would be proud.

Mrs.Campbell said...

I <3 this. You go! I am going to use your Mama Bear line. You are an awesome example for moms to be and your beautiful girls. :)

it's just me... said...

Thanks for the love, ladies. <3

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