I came home the other night after meeting a friend out to an email from my husband that was marked “Early Birthday Present, A Guest Post if you want it.” So of course I had to sit down and read it! It’s about a “parenting fail” that has given my husband and I a lot of grief these last few weeks…because we screwed up, and one of our children was very sad as a result. But first, before we get to the post, let me do the introductions! My guest today is my hubby, Mike Nahom, of Super Dad fame from my early Father’s Day post. He is a great dad and husband…I am very lucky.
Sometimes your kids surprise you (in a positive way).
If you are a regular reader of my wife’s blog, you know my daughter’s passion for soccer. She loves everything about the sport — playing, practicing, watching and even coaching soccer if she gets the chance in her busy schedule.
Our summer schedule is planned around her soccer camp. It is a very competitive camp that she loves to go to. We don’t plan any summer activities until the camp schedule comes out. Once we get the date of the camp, we plan our vacation. It would be fair to say this is something that is really important to her, and it would be a big disappointment to her if she didn’t get to go.
This spring, in order to stretch our ever dwindling bank account, I waited longer than usual to sign her up for camp. So about two weeks ago, I went online to sign her up, but it wouldn’t let me. I called to see how to register and found out that I had actually waited too long. Registration was closed. My heart dropped. This is the only thing our daughter cares about doing over the summer. She looks forward to it all year. I begged and pleaded, but was told there was nothing I could do. I called her coach and some higher ups, but they couldn’t pull any strings. I was told that she would be first on the waiting list in case another child backed out of the camp. It did not sound promising.
I called my wife to tell her the bad news. She couldn’t believe that I did that, but she didn’t get mad at me. I probably would have gotten upset with her if it was the other way around, but I guess my wife is a better person than me. She asked if I wanted her to tell our daughter. I said I would do it when I got home; there was no reason that my wife should get the brunt of our daughter’s wrath.
So that night I waited until we were alone, and I told her the bad news. I was ready for some lines like: “How could you ruin my summer?” or “You are destroying my soccer career.” She said nothing like that. She told me not to worry…she understood. She tried to console me. Then she went upstairs and didn’t come back down. I knew how upset she was, but she held it inside. Of course that just made me feel even worse. I was hoping that she would flip out so I could say “You don’t even deserve to go to camp.” But no, she had to behave like an adult; actually she behaved better than most adults. Oh, the guilt I felt. I did tell her I would keep trying to get her in, but couldn’t promise anything.
That night I emailed her coach to thank him for trying to help and told him I was more proud of my daughter’s reaction that night than any time I watched her on the soccer field. She really surprised me. She’s a lot more mature than I give her credit for.
Over the next few weeks she asked me about it a few times, but didn’t bug me about it. She did hold it over my head once to get something, but she was only kidding.
Well karma does happen. I emailed the lady in charge this morning and she emailed me back and said that no one had backed out yet. But ten minutes later I got another email and then a phone call to let me know that a girl had just called them because she could no longer go to the camp. Our daughter was going to be able to go after all! I actually came home from work to tell her so I could see her face.
It was worth the trip.