Thursday, March 19, 2009

Softball...or maybe not

My heart is hurting for my daughter. I thought by now I would be over these feelings after...let's see, 7 hours, but I'm not.

You see, my 12 year old plays softball & has since 3rd grade. Often, she has been able to play on her aunt's team, who is, by the way, a fabulous coach. But this season her aunt isn't coaching. So we decided to give Little League a try. Partially because they offered free registration this season & partially because the field is 3 miles from our house. Otherwise, she might not have been able to plat at all. Most of the girls she has played with every other season are either playing travel ball or on the rec league.

The problem that has arisen is that she is playing with some girls who think they know everything there is to know about playing softball. Even though they have not played before. To be fair it isn't everyone on her team that acts that way. But the girls who do are IN YOUR FACE about it. Or should I say, in my daughter's face. And, as my daughter said after tonight's game, "A few bad apples spoil the whole barrel."

I am not saying my child is an amazing player. She is good. She is willing to play whatever position the coach asks her to play. She generally has a good attitude. But she is trying to pitch this season for the first time & is getting flak FROM HER OWN TEAM MEMBERS when she struggles. She also tries to get the girls cheering in the dugout. (If you have ever been to a girl's softball game, you know they like to cheer.) But they even fight over cheers. "I know, you don't." And my daughter's heart hurts. Which really stinks.

I have never, NEVER let any of my children give up anything they started if they asked & agreed to participate in it. But after Wed night's game & a conversation with my daughter I am re-evaluating that stance. Is it really worth it when your child is unhappy because of the way she is being treated? Should I shield her from this meanness?

God, help me to make the right decision for my child.


Mariah said...

Have you talked to the coach about it? Not in an accusing way, but to see if they see anything like that? Or have you checked to see if she could change teams? Our league will do that if there is a conflict with the girls/boys or the coach. You could check that out and see. Kids and sports though, bring out the worst sometimes. I think it is one of the hardest things for a kid to do, team sports. All of mine are involved, so I understand totally. I am sorry about your daughter's issues with some of the girls.

ginger said...

Mariah: Thanks for the ideas & the understanding. Part of the problem lies in the fact that we have parent-coaches. A little more touchy to talk to them about the girls. Also, the league at this level has only 2 teams because it's the 1st time in 3 years they've had softball. Might be kind of obvious that she switched...We're going to take things as they come for a few more games. I just wish I didn't have this knot in the pit of my stomach. ;)

Lora said...

Ginger this just brought back memories from when my teens were your daughters age and played softball. Oh the heart break for mamas when we see and feel their hurts and pain.

I loved your last line asking God to help you make the right decision for your daughter. He will Ginger. He will.

I have Scripture marked in my Bible with Softball and the year when I would sob situations out before the Lord. I remember one time He gave me a Word not to do anything and it was hard. But He worked it out for good as only He can do! He will help you!

ginger said...

Lora: Thanks for the encouragement. Nice to know I'm not alone. We have a game tonight; it would be nice to have some resolution & not more frustration. I will try to leave it in God's hands & not yank it back out!

Girly said...

I wish I had some good advice on this one but I don't. Other than to say to that you should follow your God given instincts. I agree that there are important lessons to be learned in not quitting or giving up but some kids are too gentle in spirit and they would truly be wounded from much of this. You know your daughter so you will make the right decision for her based on that knowledge but what the world says (stick it out, suck it up, etc...) isn't always best for each child. A tender heart is precious thing and more important the lesson than a lesson that can be learned later about how to deal with unkindness.

ginger said...

Girly: I so agree with you. This evening she came into my room & I could tell something was up. She has been not-quite-herself this weekend & we talked again. She is still hurting. And, though I have spoken with her coaches I am ultimately still not sure of the correct direction to take on this. Would love someone else to figure it out for me, you know?
More praying for me to do.