The Boy is equal parts appalled and fascinated with what other kids get away with. He’s caught between wanting to do something fun and rude but not sure if it’s worth paying the price. He’s forever pointing out kids who cut line or say nasty things…there is nothing more fascinating then hearing a 10 year old swear. Recently when a little boy in a store gave his Mom the middle finger, his jaw hit the floor, then he looked at me like “What the hell, how can he get away with that?”
By far the worst is when the bad behaviour is directed at him or his friends. When he feels he’s been mistreated he initially looks around for someone to correct the child, but what he’s learning is the older he gets the more he has to figure out how to deal with it himself…no one is coming to his rescue. You can see his brain working overtime and when he comes to me for guidance, nine times out of ten, I tell him to walk away. I talk all about Karma and the laws of cause and effect. The more kindness you send out the more you will receive in return. And I truly believe in what I’m telling him…I do, even though I’m not the best at practicing what I preach.
For a couple weeks he’s been complaining about a kid in his hockey skills class who insists on being first in the drills. It doesn’t matter if he’s passed and someone else gets to the finish first, this kid comes up and steps in front, sometimes shoving his way there. Since I’m never there to be a witness to this I told him to let him be, no big deal, if he really feels the need to be first, let him, let it roll off your back…Karma will take of it.
“You’re better than that.”
And I felt good about saying it, until last week when Hubby was late and I had to go. We had just left the dressing room and were walking to the ice when I was shoved from behind into the wall by this kid in a green jersey who bolted passed me to get on the ice before anyone else.
Kid asshole and I had just been introduced.
Interesting, I thought, as I glanced over at his father to get a sense if he possibly saw what happened. He did. He said nothing, which explains a lot.
As the hour passed green jersey (aka kid asshole) time and time again step in front of every kid to be first in line. I watched him elbowed and shove just enough to get his point across, but not enough to get caught by the twenty something year old coach who couldn’t care less anyway.
I watched his father have no reaction.
He took off to start every drill and The Boy slowed his pace to stay behind him, sacrificing his own work out to avoid confrontation.
I began taking deep cleansing breaths.
His father (Bigger Asshole) stood up against the glass yelling directions. I felt for green jersey, it was obvious he was just trying hard to impress his father. Just let it be, I told myself and bit my tongue.
A drill was beginning right in front of me and I watched green jersey come up from behind and push my son in the shoulders, shoving him back so he could be first. Then, once in front and I guess just for good measure, he turned and gave him another little shove, kind of like a warning.
The Boy looked at me like “you see” and I did see…and then I lost my shit.
Karma took a backseat as I ripped off my rose coloured glasses and slammed on my Mommy goggles. The Boy and I made eye contact, I could tell he was angry but he shrugged, trying (for me) to be Zen about it, exactly how I taught him to be.
Now what comes next wasn’t my best moment. You can ask my husband who had shown up about two minutes before. I glared at Big Asshole who was too far away to yell at so I told him off telepathically because it was his fault for what was about to take place. I looked at The Boy and with every ounce of Motherly love gave him the international sign for “elbow the bastard.”
At first he looked confused, then amused; until he figured out I was stone cold serious. I rambled loudly and tapped on the glass. Screw that father and his kid asshole. If you’re going to teach your child to be a pushy little jerk then, be prepared to get pushed back. How dare he think he can push my son around and get away with it?
“Push him back,” I said like a manic through the glass, not caring at the moment about the arena full of onlookers…like I said, not my best moment.
He thought about it, I could tell he really wanted to but his cool head prevailed. Or maybe it was the look of absolute horror on his father’s face. I left because what else could I do? I’m sure I was the topic of dinner conversations that evening. “You should have heard this Mom lose her shit tonight…”
When he got home I apologized for not taking his complaints seriously and I asked him if he wanted me to talk to the coach.
“No, it’s fine. The kid has it tough enough with his Dad always yelling.”
Maybe I haven’t done to bad of a job with this kid.
So I left him to fight his own battles, but before I did I let him know how proud I was of him. I turned to him and in a very calm and loving tone told him that if he feels the need to give kid asshole a little shove next week…I wouldn’t be mad and neither would Karma.