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Looking at it through a child’s eyes

December 16, 2011
EDGAR?KELLEY IN THE?BOX ( , The Inter-Mountain

Like many parents of young athletes, I needed a wake up call when it came to being compassionate, yet firm, on pushing my kids to do the right thing.

And that alarm finally went off this past weekend with my youngest son.

After spending a fantastic evening with him at a sports banquet to celebrate his accomplishments for a great season, the night ended in emotional horror for the both of us.

After sitting impatiently through dinner and two other award ceremonies, the time he had anxiously waited for the entire night had finally come - trophy presentations.

Like no other child I've been around before, my son cherishes every award he gets, whether it be a certificate from school, or in this instance, a sports trophy. I can honestly say that getting something of this nature is bigger to him than any video game every made.

So when his name was called to gather his trophy along side his teammates, the dash from his seat to the front of the room resembled that of a top fuel dragster burning out at the green light.

All seemed fine and dandy as he stood arm-to-arm with the rest of his team. As one of the last few names were bellowed out, I noticed an accident that was ready to happen, and it did.

I still haven't received an answer as to why the trophy, which was in a box similar to that of a small pizza, was being balanced atop my son's head.

But you guessed it, about four to five seconds into this stunt, the trophy slid off the back of his head and tumbled to the floor.

At the time, I wasn't sure if the box saved the trophy from destruction; but as I ventured to the front of the room and saw him gazing down at his prized possession, the answer was clear.

And that's when, instead of thinking with my heart, I did the opposite and lectured him about doing the right thing and the consequences that transpire when you do not.

It wasn't until later on in the night that I realized I didn't handle the situation the right way. And what I felt inside wasn't good.

Instead if grabbing my 7-year-old, giving him a hug and saying the words he needed to hear, I took the tough-guy approach.

And to tell you the truth, it ate at my soul for several days.

I'm sure there will be some instances in the future when a good scolding is in order, but I've since made a promise to myself to better analyze future situations like this one.

If every parent will take time out and look at it through their kids' eyes before speaking, dejection on both sides may be avoided.



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