Why am I so emotional, particularly about the things I am most passionate about? Is it normal to cry in front of people? Is that strength or weakness?
Today, I had a really odd day. Right from the minute I woke up things were weird. I had slept funny, my neck was hurting and I didn’t feel well rested. I was not feeling quite as smug as I had been yesterday, I was feeling decidedly flat!
I headed off early to talk to a group of kids about something I was passionate about. I think I got my point across but, I got emotional in doing so. My whole point was, we all have our choices. The things we pursue are ours to choose, we should choose to do things we love. I urged them to be honest with themselves and their expectations.
I get upset seeing kids doing things for the wrong reasons, eg. their friends are, or because their parents want them to. I want them to do what they love, because they love it. I can’t exactly put my finger on why it got me emotional today. Perhaps just because I was tired? I guess too much of it rings true to me. How many things have I been doing because I thought I had to or should, and not because I wanted to. I can’t figure out who I felt was making me do things though, because my parents were never overly pushy. As I discussed in an earlier blog, I think the answer is ME.
Anyway, I feel a bit embarrassed now. How will teenage girls react to my display of emotion as one of their leaders/mentors? Will they take my message on board or will they just think I am some crazy neurotic ‘has been’? Will they respect my raw honesty? I guess the coming weeks will tell.
Then later this morning (this is the bit that has hit me like a ton of bricks and in a way I should have expected it) my son, who reads me like a book and takes on all my insecurities and stresses, had what can only be described as a ‘crisis in confidence’ on the soccer field. I had taken the time off work especially to be there to watch him as I rarely get the opportunity. That was simply too much for him.
It was the most interesting and upsetting display. It was almost the universe playing my thoughts out right there in front of me. It has taken me all afternoon to work it out, but I think what happened was (he can’t articulate it, so I am filling in the gaps)…….He felt that he had to go out and have a good game because I was there to watch him. I had somehow created the exact scenario I had been preaching about earlier. He was no longer there for him, he was there for me (in his mind).
He then proceeded to tell my husband (the assistant coach) he wasn’t playing today because his knee hurt. He said he was going home.
I couldn’t believe it.
In preference to causing a scene while he was coaching, my husband asked me to take him home. On the way to the car, my son said ‘Mum, can you leave? I don’t want you here’. I burst into tears. I asked him if I had heard correctly. He said yes. I sent him back to his team and I went home.
I had become exactly the opposite of what I wanted to be. I wanted to be a supportive and not overly pushy parent. Somehow, just my presence was too much. The expectation was too high (or so he thought). Later on I asked him about it, he said I might cheer too loud! Seriously……………….. this is what it comes down to? I might embarrass him with a show of support??!!!! Or is it simpler than that? Is it just that his routine was disrupted? He is used to me not being able to be there. Me being there, just threw him out of kilter?
Either way……………………………WOW. Sporting parents really are ‘dammed if we do and dammed if we don’t’. How on earth do we support them without inadvertently pressuring them? How do we bring out the best in them, without forcing them?
I am one exhausted and emotional Mum tonight.