The hardest part of being a parent is watching your child realize for the first time life isn't fair. My son got his first look at politics tonight. It wasn't on Hardball, or Meet the Press, it was Little League.
I was an athlete my whole life. You name the game I played it. I was well aware of men trying to relive their broken dreams through their children. Of course, daughters, if they didn't have sons.
Let me tell you as a single mother who is the force behind my children's sport's aspirations, I knew I would come face to face with being caught as a woman, in a very dominated father's world where my opinion means nothing. The funny part is, I can go toe to toe with most of these suburban dad's, but I don't hurt their ego,because in turn it would hurt my sons.
I won't bore you with the details. Jax got the shaft today. I admit, it is the first time in a long time I have lost my cool! My son is an incredible baseball player. People from all over, actually anyone who sees him play, have commented on his arm and what a great player he is. It didn't matter this baseball draft.
There are rules in Little League that are unjust and unfair. But I could deal with them because that is life, and those are the rules. But when my son gets the short end of the stick because dad's are all exhibiting their ape like qualities in a draft that lasts until midnight, I know gross, these are eleven and twelve year olds, not the MLB, and playing favorites among their children my mother tiger comes roaring out with little control.
Unfortunately, I have a few friends that were at the draft that told me how unfair it was and what went down. My son made a team, but one with players considerably younger than him.
We were in shock, my son was in tears, and doesn't want to play. I keep reminding myself that Michael Jordan was cut from his High School Basketball team and he kept trying.
I am sad for his humilation, I am sad he had to learn what goes on in real life already. It is hard to watch your child realize life isn't always fair. I am in a dilemma. Is the high road the one that involves having him be humiliated, bored, and demoralized? Or is the high road the one of which I try to find another league in another city? Or is the high road let him take the season off? The problem with that is Jax is a phenomenal baseball player that has an intense love for the game and taking a year off would crush his spirit.
I haven't been stumped like this for a long time. I have to make up my mind. This is the part of parenting that breaks my heart. His innocence is being chipped away a little at a time in front of my eyes. There are so many good things in life, but being naive when you are a child, when the world seems fair and just is a brilliant time in life. So to watch that slowly dissipate in your child is heartbreaking.
I dried his tears and told him we will make this decision together. He looked at me and said, "mommy I just don't want to disappoint you. I am sorry, I did my best, and you tell me to do your best, you can't do anymore than your best. Why couldn't you have been at the draft like all these other kids dads?" I told Jax, "the best things in life are the things that you earned all on your own! You have always earned your right on every team, you got jilted, but in the end we will make this right."
Causes Heather Hogan Supports
Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation
Breast Cancer Awareness