Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Bringing up boys: The bitterness of disappointment


When you are bitterly disappointed you can’t cry at the unfairness of it, you have to be grown up, bite your lip and slap your friends on the back and say: “Brilliant!” and “Well done!” and “That’s great!” You watch them in their glory as they jump up and down, beings apart and you become a looker-on rather than one of the team, the team you so wanted to be part of.
Walking back from the nets, you smile wanly at the Coach who says: “But you are very good at bowling,” while all the time knowing that you weren’t good enough.
You see your Mum waiting expectantly for you to go home and suddenly your desire to go there wanes and you start to drag your feet and dawdle longing to put off the inevitable questions and having to admit that you only made the C Team for Cricket.
You know she wants you to get in the B Team at least, and talk of the A Team? “Come on!” you long to shout. “I’m useless can’t you see! I’m not good enough! And it’s not fair! I love cricket and I should be at least in the B team!” But you can’t, she wouldn’t understand. She’ll just think you are a failure.
“How’s your day?” she asks brightly and you inwardly groan. You see your younger brother all smiling and bouncy and at that moment you want to thump him hard. How dare he be smiling when you are crying inside!
So you thump him and suddenly everyone is cross and your brother is crying and a bit of you goes: “Good! Now you know how it feels!” And typical Mum she would take his side and you feel mad and cross and it’s not fair! It’s never fair!
You say you only made it into the C Team and your Mum says something naff like: “That’s wonderful Darling! You were in the C Team for Hockey and guess what? The C Team was undefeated!”
You look at her as if she was stupid. “I mean come on! Doesn’t she understand that being in any team other than the C team is much much better?” Instead you smile at her and go yay C team undefeated while inwardly shaking your head in bewilderment. “How can Mum’s just not get it?”
You answer all the questions in monosyllables on the way home and kick the back of the chair for want of anything better to do. You get told off but hey what does it matter? You feel useless anyway.
You glower at your brother. “Come on then - smile then I’ll pinch you and you’ll not smile again. How come he’s always so happy everybody loves him, he gets everything.”
You hear your Mum suggest having donuts for tea
“But I don’t want those!” you say even though you do really. You just want to get what YOU want not what EVERYONE else says you should have.
You can’t concentrate on your homework and the words go fuzzy and nothing goes right and you get told off for leaving your pencil case at school and for taking so long but you just can’t do it and it’s too difficult and you don’t want to do it. “It’s not fair!” you inwardly rail. Mums are SO stupid.
It’s time for bed and you have to read to your Mum and you are so tired and you know she’ll only get angry with you and tell you off. “Why bother?” You stumble over the words and you are furious with yourself and HER.
“I hate you!” you say with as much poison in your voice as possible.
“But I love you and I know why you are so upset,” she says. You look at her amazed and suddenly you know she knows all about it and she’s not cross at all and you can’t help it but you cry. You cry and cry and cry and she just holds you like she used to and it doesn’t matter so much because she knows.

14 comments:

Trish @ Mum's Gone to... said...

Gulp! Bless his little heart!

I guess that's our job isn't it: to instinctively know and understand.

Michelloui | The American Resident said...

Well written, I can really really feel this!

What a wonderful mum that you are so in touch with all of this. Not all mums would.

Spencer Park said...

My mum still knows when I've had a day like that - it can become a little frustrating! But, also very, very, very great. (She even knows over the telephone - how does she do that!).

I actually came back from a week with my mum on Sunday and as I entered my house I thought to myself, "I don't know what I'd do without my mum!"

He is a very lucky boy!

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

Well done ! To both of you .... he's on a team and will be playing a game he enjoys ... and to you for breaking through the miserable shell .
May the C team wipe the floor with every opponent they meet !!! (said she , reprehensibly ) .

Von said...

Good ole Mum!There wouldn't be a A or a B Team if it wasn't for the C's!
Learning is hard, learning to loose and not be perfect is harder.Bet he's really expert at something.

legend in his own lunchtime said...

Lovely post Tattie.

Mud in the City said...

What a good mum. To understand him so well you can read through the bluff and bluster and administer a needed hug.
x

Potty Mummy said...

What a great post. x

Sarah said...

Just found your blog via Tots100! Wow, you sure can write! This is brilliant and so powerful to read!

Sugarplum Kawaii said...

Lovely post, and oh-dear...it rang some bells! My son plays rugby. He's up in the A's and down to the B's quite often. He grits his teeth over it all but I've seen my husband close to tears!

Frankie P said...

What a lovely post, something to remember for when my boys are that age..

Bluestocking Mum said...

Aww. Gulp. I felt this post Tattie
x

ella said...

I have four (sporty) boys and I just love, love this post.

Tattie Weasle said...

Good heaven completely forgot to say thank you to everyone who so kindly commented...
Trish - sometimes it's easy to know what to do just hug!
Michelloui - the only reason I knew is that I went through this too as a little girl.
Spencer - mums are special I just keep forgetting that I am one!
Smitonius and sonata - C team will be triumphant, I just know it!
Von - he's expert at being him and I love that!

Go on you know you want to...

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