This blog is a collection of stories on the ordinary days of today and a documentary of the days of the past. Thank-you for reading and allowing me to share. Enjoy your ordinary days and hopefully the bits and pieces of mine will resonate with the moments in your lives that bring you happiness.
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July 26, 2013: Heidi Woodard: Many contenders for title of psycho mom
Blogger: Heidi Woodard
You’ve all either witnessed one or been one or are one yourself: the psycho, overly-involved, hovering-over-your-child mom. You have good intentions (or so you claim), but your actions tend to speak louder than words.
So which division of moms is the most intense? Is it the sports mom? The cheer/dance team mom? What about spelling bee mom? The “My child’s on the honor roll, homecoming court or show choir” mom?
I think by watching only two episodes of “Toddlers and Tiaras” I have locked in my vote. If you are forcing your 3-year old to spray tan and whiten teeth, you maaaay want to step back, take a long look at yourself in the mirror and ask, “Why?”
This psycho mom thing really started to rear its head as I sat and watched my 8-year-old practice baseball last week. First of all, I felt the need to introduce myself to the coach for the first time upon arriving at the field (my husband had handled practice duty up to this point) by saying I would be willing to help during practice if he needed anything. I also tossed in the fact that I played ball at Creighton many moons ago.
And that’s when the little voice in my head said, “Really? You are dropping credentials? It’s a 10-and-under league. If you know which hand your glove goes on and where the concession stand is located, you are probably qualified enough to help out if needed.”
Later in practice, the team started taking batting practice. This is the first year that Owen has competed in a league in which the pitchers are his peers (prior to now it was coach pitch).
My little lefty was at the plate, his helmet balanced too far back on his head, taking cuts. The count was 3 balls, 2 strikes, and I could see that the teammate who was pitching to Owen was trying just as hard to ring him up as Owen was trying to make contact.
Then it happened. An inside fast ball nailed my little man smack-dab on his bony hip. And he went down.
I know I made an audible gasp. The pitcher actually glanced at me. And I gave him this “It’s OK … I know you didn’t mean to do that” look. And then my focus returned to my son. He slowly got up, wiping away tears, trying to reassure his coach and me that he would be OK. I was so proud of him that I can’t even put it into words.
I met him in the dugout (yes, I did … the sacred space where parents really shouldn’t be). I told him the pitcher didn’t do it on purpose. He told me he knew that. I explained that left-handed batters, when facing right-handed pitchers, tend to get hit — especially if the pitcher really wants to strike them out.
The pitcher inevitably winds back to put a little more juice on the ball, and if he doesn’t release the ball at just the right moment, it can result in a pitch that is hard to avoid getting hit with. I told him getting hit with the ball was the worst thing in baseball, but that the pain would go away.
And, finally, I told him to not be scared the next time he went up to the plate. He looked up at me and said, “I won’t.”
All that kept racing through my mind was that someday I would have to explain to him how there will be opposing team pitchers who throw at batters on purpose just to mess with their minds and try to intimidate them.
What will happen if one of those pitchers intentionally hits Owen or someone else on his team? And has a loud-mouth mom who yells, “That’s right, Timmy! Teach him not to crowd the plate the next time he faces you!”?
Well, I can guarantee you that that will be the day I leave the “Toddlers and Tiaras” moms in the dust and solely secure first place in the psycho mom division.
In Dr. Seuss' language, my thoughts on the day would go something like this...
"You have a brain in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. Unless someone truly cares an awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not."
Well, I will just sum it up by saying that today certainly wasn't an ordinary day, but I will accept that. Life is full of changes, good and bad.
Sometimes the toughest part is figuring out if life shake-ups are truly a good or a bad thing. Personally, I have found my biggest life challenges have turned into opportunities. Doors opened to new people and adventures. A new chapter in life.
I am bullish in my view that this will be the case once again.
When the unexpected creeps into the door of normalcy, the best response is not one of self-doubt, anger, or fear. The best response is gaining perspective and self-awareness.
Time flies when you're having fun.
And when you're a little busy.
This morning Garrett asked me when I last wrote a blog.
"It's been a while" was my answer. Upon further review, it's almost been over a month.
I've had no reason for the delay, other than the combination of being busy and knowing the content of which I wanted to write warranted more time and thought than my more typical whimsical stories told. Although I have had an arsenal of stories that I have wanted to write about over the last month, I knew that this one needed to top my list.
A common question asked of me is in regards to my work life is "Sandy, what exactly are you doing these days?"
This is a valid question since I have been very open in sharing my work journey over the years through my blog. And I've had a career that has gone from very conventional to unconventional. It's much easier to say "I work for XYZ Company and my job title is Chief Do-Something-Spec…
A picture is worth a thousand words. But let's start with six...
"And they lived happily ever after..."
I bought this little sign more than seven years ago. It caught my eye at Target while shopping for milk and kitty litter on a weekday school night. The boys were in varying grades in school and I was single-handedly running my daily household.
Recently divorced, I was also dating a man from Denver. Garrett. Our relationship felt like forever, but the 550 miles between our homes was a stark reminder that our long-distance relationship was more like a fairytale than reality. We were reminded of this frequently by the people who knew us best.
"Guard your heart. Long distance relationships rarely work out."
"You are both good people, so be realistic in where this is going."
But the funny thing about love is that no matter how practical-minded or mature your mindset, your heart guides you to places that are scary to others, but quite comfortable for you…