Eldest didn't move up as expected to the next swimming group on our team. He was disappointed, and with what I pay for swim fees and the time spent, I was a bit too.
At the same time, kids that were younger were moved up. Kids that were slower--12 seconds slower in some events--were moved up, so I called the coach to ask what gived.
The coach let me know it came down to immaturity and focus. Honestly, he said Eldest needed to "stop grab assing" and lead in his lane. He also mentioned what I've mentioned before that Eldest blows them away at meets, then is lazy as hell and silly at practices.
Nothing new! At the PNS champs just before an event that he final-ed in, he was chasing his good friend and sister in a rousing game of tag. As in 10 minutes before a 200 backstroke. The night before I caught him watching tv at 1:30 AM in the hotel instead of sleeping the night before this big meet. He was slated, by seed times to final in 4 events out of eight preliminary events. He only made one and seemed more interested in playing with friends and not drinking or eating.
So I completely understood. Although the helicopter parent in me asked if there was anything "I" could do. As soon a I said it, I was swearing in my head. Of course not. At age 12, it is up to him. The coach said the same. He has to prove himself. Prove that he can be focused. Prove he can be mature. They will reassess in a month.
My question: Is there such a thing as a mature 12 year old boy? People, I haven't met one yet. Sigh.
So, off I went to relay this to Eldest and CG. CG somewhat focused on the word, "grab-ass." He said, "He really said grab-ass, not horseplay, or fooling around."
"Yes, grab ass. Why?"
You see, it seemed not out of the ordinary to use that phrase. His coach was once military. I was once military, not that his coach knows that. Seemed fine to me. It didn't stand out.
CG said while "grab-assing" is what Eldest does, it seemed like a pretty inappropriate comment for a coach to say to a mom. It made him laugh and shake his head.
Hmmmm....I found it refreshing for his coach to speak plainly to me as a mom. If he's says it to a guy, why not me? I wish more people just would say what they mean.
Back to Eldest, finding out that someone else questions his work ethic is no surprise. Things came so easily, school and swimming in particular, early on that he's never had to work at anything until the last two years.
He seems befuddled that he has to work at school now --that he has to study. The same with swimming. Getting sectional times at meets only to get passed on all sides at practice simply doesn't cut it. It shows the coach that you have the potential to do so much more if you tried.
As for the actual grab-assing? (Innocent expression) Gosh! I just don't know where that comes from? I mean CG and I never do that. Nope, we are some of the most mature people I know.
Call it Joie de vivre. Call it grab-assing. It's inherited. I guess we need to teach him to tone it down a tad, yes?
*Blog Notes: Thanks for the great editorial Flikr picture, by Jeff Croft. If I had tried to stage that picture with CG he would have probably expected something crazy like sex. Pffffh!