Friday, March 23, 2007

My kid beat up your honor roll student.

Today was the first day of practice. My son is now officially in the minor league. Woo Hoo. I'm very proud of him, he remembered almost everything from the last 4 years, with one exception: pointing the ball. I have tried and tried to teach this kid to aim for someone's chest. Honestly, I don't think he hit the broad side of a barn. Needless to say, I don't think he'll be the pitcher. Which is cool by me, I like watching him chase after some of those foul balls. He likes being hind catcher, it keeps his attention. Which is a good thing because it wasn't until last year that I convinced him to stand up during the game and not sit and pick the dandelions.

My SIL, Stacey, is finding out what life is like here in our quaint town. In other words, she's realizing that if your child doesn't play a sport or isn't cheering for the team, then your child is pretty much neglected in school. It's the popularity contest that we have all went through. It seems even now, at (almost) 33 years old, I'm still playing the popularity game.

I got to thinking about this popularity contest called LIFE. It seems everyone is always competing in some fashion or another. We all want to be the prettiest, the thinnest, the smartest or the most liked. And we pass that down to our kids. I didn't realize how much every one craves acceptance from other people until my son went to school. Every parent there was encouraging their child to "go make friends" or "be the smartest".

I will admit, I too am guilty of this. I want my son to be accepted and well liked. He has enough problems to overcome in school anyway. For example, he is already 5 ft 3 in. at 9 years old. He weighs approximately 165 lbs. That is off the charts for a 9 year old boy. I honestly believe the only thing that keeps him from being teased about it, is the other kids are afraid of him. (I did teach him not to take shit from anyone) Yet another example, he is in Special Education. He does not read well, nor does he comprehend what little he can read. Bam! 2 strikes against him already.

It's sad to think that I have pushed my son into thinking social acceptance is something he should strive for. I learned about 10 years ago, from my Mom, Lisa, not to give two shits about what people think about you. Who are they to you? Will what I'm doing right now make a difference in a week? A year? She taught me to stand up for myself and not to take any shit off of anyone. For the most part, I live by those standards. I am who I am. You either love me or you hate me, and I personally could give a rat's ass about either one.

How hypocritical is that? Somehow, I need to stress the value of liking yourself and who you are to my son. I have unintentionally diverted his attention away from himself to the popularity game. I need to rectify this and I need to do it quickly. However, I am at a complete and total loss as to go about correcting my mistake. I'm clueless on this one. I have a feeling that no matter what I say, he will always strive to please someone other than himself. And that, is a sad situation.

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