Watching Your Kids Get Hurt

September 14, 2010 by cloften  
Filed under Family and Parenting

It had been quite the buzz on my daughter Maylee’s Facebook page that she auditioned for a musical last weekend.  She did a great job.  I was so proud of her.  She had never done this before.  She had been in children’s musicals at church (a little different), but had never auditioned for something like this.  To be in musicals and plays is a dream of hers.  She practiced this song all week and went to this children’s theater and belted it out.  I was frying in the sun at a Ft. Smith soccer tourney, but Heidi says that she did great.

Well that was Saturday, and the next couple of days were full of anxious anticipation.  Over 200 kids tried out for about 10 parts, so she knew the chances weren’t great, but she was giddy with anticipation.  We didn’t understand why she had to wait from Saturday to Monday, even though kids were auditioning on Sunday.  We didn’t understand why as soon as those auditions on Sunday were over that the results weren’t up.  We didn’t understand why we didn’t know before we went to school on Monday.  We didn’t understand why when we got picked up from school that the results weren’t posted.  We don’t understand why when it said “by 7 pm” that they waited until 6:45.

I’m not being cute by saying “we,” because both Heidi and I in different places probably hit the refresh button on our computers 100 times each on Sunday night and Monday.  When it wasn’t posted on the internet when I picked Maylee up from school, we drove across town to see if it was posted at the facility.  We really wanted this for her.

Well, at 6:45 it was up, and Maylee had not gotten a part.  I was at home, and the girls were at a soccer practice.  I was tasked with telling Maylee.  It was not easy.  I hated every bit of it.  After I hung up the phone, I almost (?) cried.  I think I can honestly say that I was more hurt than she was.  She bounced back rather quickly.  I didn’t.

She is getting ready to do another audition in the next few weeks (she is trying to keep this one on the down-low.  She went pretty public with the last one. So you will get no details, and don’t ask her.).  She has tremendous courage and is pursuing her dream with conviction.  I know all the right things.  Disappointment is good for kids.  It’s teaching her to work hard. Life isn’t handed to you. Blah blah blah, leave me alone.  When my baby girl hurts, I hurt, often worse.

I thought that if I wrote this post, I would ultimately process through all of this and it would come together with some sort of teachable moment that would make it worth your time to have read this.  Don’t know that I have one.

I just wish that my girls didn’t have to face disappointment.  I wish I could protect them from that, but I can’t.  I can however, walk along side them, love them, praise them, cry with them and be their biggest fans.  I can love them and support them so much that I am as happy as they are when they are happy and as sad when they are sad.

(P.S. Despite rumors to the contrary, I will not be going after the director.  “Great, Cloften, way to ruin the teachable moment.”  Sorry, my bad.)


2 Responses to “Watching Your Kids Get Hurt”
  1. Jennifer Loftin says:

    I love seeing a daddy be his girls’ biggest fan – that is always worth writing about. That will preach. Glad your back! I love these type of post from you.

  2. Tim Gaddy says:

    Good post, Charlie. I feel your pain. Kids seem to be a lot more resilient than us dads. Miss you in Cabot.

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