My girls lost their tournament game last night by an unspectacular score of 3-0. They were not hitting anything and our pitching could have been stronger. The bottom line – the other team was more “on” then we were for the hour and a half we played. Oh well, you win some and lose some, right? WRONG!
I was so bummed for my girls. The night before I had been anxious about the game and had nightmares about forfeiting it. How ridiculous. A half hour prior to the game, I had the girls throw and hit to prepare. I got them all revved up and put black ink under their eyes.
We got up to bat and my three best hitters struck out. 1-2-3. Are you kidding? Then my best pitcher went out on the mound and threw balls. The other team was well aware she was off and the girls just waited for a walk. Nonetheless, the first two innings our infield made spectacular double plays and kept the score 0-0. But we had one bad inning in the third – combo pitching and infield errors – that allowed three runs to score on us. And that did us in for the season. We could not get ourselves on base to save our lives. The girls just did not have their game on the way we needed to beat the other team. And that happens and it is ok, right? WRONG!
I lined up the girls after the last out and counseled them to congratulate the Giants and be proud of what they accomplished this year. Inside, I was churning though. After we shook hands, we circled up and I told the girls how proud I was of them; how they’d grown; how they’d come together as a team. They were dejected, and I was too. But I kept the mood upbeat and did not show it. We put our hands in the circle and chanted 1-2-3 “Go Reds!” one last time. One of my assistant coaches said “let’s also do a cheer for the Giants in order to be good sports.” The girls cringed. I followed up and demanded it was the right thing to do. Hands in the middle. 1-2-3 “Good game Giants!” we all cheered. And then the girls dispersed. Parents left. And I cleaned up bubble gum wrappers and sunflower seed kernels. I felt like I hadn’t done enough.
What is this perfectionist gene I got stuck with and why can’t I ship it off to never never land? Somehow my mind warps an excellent season with my third and fourth grade girls’ softball players to a lame one. The parents are probably mad that I didn’t coach better. The girls are going to be in a state of ruin because they didn’t get trophies. I should have worked harder at throwing and catching with them. Stop brain. Just stop. Do these gals pictured below seem dejected?!
Loosen up on the control, Mary. You can’t mold the future and what it will bring. You can’t do anything about a girl striking out or a missed catch. Life can suck sometimes and you don’t always get what you want. Life is messy and imperfect, girls, but you keep moving forward. It doesn’t help being a control freak and a bit OCD about needing everything to go perfectly but the game provided yet another teaching opportunity to me that things aren’t perfect and I can’t make them so. And DQ helped lessen the pain a bit, too….