Monday, October 11, 2010

Hey Mom! Play Your Position!

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I cannot do it all.

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Really, I know that I can’t, and yet there is a part of me that so desperately wants to be able to do everything and do it well. After all, I’m the mom! I want to be the star player on my family’s team.

A few years ago, there was a child on my son’s baseball team who also wanted to do it all. I noticed him immediately at one of the first practices of the season. In his enthusiasm for the game, this young player fielded every ball that came his way—and also the balls that didn’t. He ran in front of his teammates, shagging flies and tagging bases as though it were a one-man show. I immediately labeled him a show-off and became increasingly annoyed by his behavior. He must think he’s the only kid out there who knows how to play ball, I thought. Why can’t he just play his position?

When he nearly collided with another player trying to catch a fly ball over the infield, I realized the boy’s actions were not only upsetting, but also unsafe. Finally, the coach took notice and called all the boys in for a talk.  “You’ve got to call the ball,” he ordered. “If the ball is coming to you, yell, ‘I got it! I got it!’ But if you see that someone else can catch the ball more easily than you can, you have to let that happen. Start yelling, ‘You! You! You!’”

What a difference those wise words made. The child whom I had labeled a “hotdog” became a different player. Why? The coach’s words had taken the pressure off. This child wasn’t a show-off at all. He simply misunderstood his role. He thought that everything was up to him. From the perverted perspective of pressure, he was seeking a way to maintain control. He thought he was responsible for the outcome of the entire game and every play from start to finish. After meeting with the coach, he began to understand the concept of teamwork. This little guy had taken what was meant to be a corporate responsibility and turned it into a personal one. He was not the team. He was a part of the team.

So why am I trying to do everything? I’m part of a team, too. We moms need to take the pressure off by allowing our family units to function as they were intended--not dependent on one person, but dependent upon each other. Join me tomorrow for some practical tips that will help it happen in your home!

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izzy said...

hahaha great post!! I'll be coming back for those tips! =)

Rebecca Ingram Powell said...

Thanks, Izzy! I hope you will!

You have a very cool site! Lots of great info!

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