As my boys get older, there become more and more opportunities for them to make me proud. It’s not that I wasn’t proud of them before, but as I encourage them to ‘be better’ and have the courage to ‘make it happen,’ somehow slowly, those wise words are sinking in.
On Friday, my oldest son played in the grand final of his hockey season. He has been the goalie all year, and I had plenty of comments from the parents and coach throughout the season about how much of an asset he is to the team. So much so, that on the way to the grand final, he told me that his coach had also made him captain for the finals. He said he was made captain because the coach thought he took the game seriously (yet if you knew my son, he just thinks that being goalie is like being in a real life video game where he can control his players! lol).
The team they were playing hadn’t yet lost a game all season, and the last time we played them we lost 2-10 (however, my son wasn’t playing that day, as that was the day we went to see USA vs Canada ice-hockey). So, as you can imagine, the other team would be expecting to win easily. And as they were at the top of the ladder, if it was a draw, they would still be Premiers. Our key striker was on the bench with a knee that had put him in crutches all week, so we weren’t confident that we would win, but the team were pumped about trying. We got the first goal. Then the score was tied, but it took a while. With 10 minutes to go before the end of the game, we were up 4-3. The parents were super excited, with adrenalin rushing through us, not caring that it was bitterly cold outside. Somehow, with just minutes spare, their team got 2 quick goals and the whistle blew… Score ending in 4-5.
Our boys were so elated with their tenacity and efforts that it didn’t bother them that they had lost. They were the ultimate sportsmen. My son, as captain, handed out runners-up medals to his team mates, and thanked the referees for their job. They did such a fine job. Shhh… but this week at the official presentation night, I know the coach is going to give my son a trophy for all his hard work and efforts (not sure what the award actually is, but after 5 years in playing hockey, it will be his first trophy, and I think he may be a little surprised!)
As for my younger son…. he has learning difficulties and has had to read an entire novel this term and do four assignments on the book. The assignments are 1) an author’s study, 2) a character web, 3) character emotions and 4) describe in your own words a scene in the book, then draw a picture of it. With a little bit of encouragement, he finished the book on the weekend. But what surprised me most, was when he really tried, and had an incentive (i.e., if you finish this chapter I will give you some candy!), he read the book so fluently and read words that I would never expect him to know. Usually it’s a drawn out process of ‘I’m too tired,’ negotiations to do less, or an inaudible voice of painful blur he thinks is called ‘reading out loud.’ It’s like he’s been playing me and his teachers about his abilities for a while now, but doesn’t want anyone to know… hmmmm…. not sure how to handle that… maybe I should secretly record him and let his teacher and tutor know what he is capable of doing…
So, as our children achieve their little milestones in leadership, processing information, and tactics, we must take out hats off to them for taking on the journey that allows them to become masters of their own lives. If only I could stop them procrastinating, then I wouldn’t need to nag! lol