Thursday, December 15, 2011

Take this troop and shove it!

Here's the deal. I am trying to be a good role model for B but I really just want to scream!

Our Girl Scout Troop was doing a holiday performance. Some of the girls had speaking parts and everyone was singing Christmas Carols. When we were assigning parts some of the girls didn't want to have a speaking roles so somewhat reluctantly B agreed to take have a part.

This is a big deal for a few reasons. Firstly her learning disabilities makes learning even 2 sentences difficult. Add to that also the reading of unfamiliar words and it's doubly hard.  Secondly her speech problems make it hard for her to be understood. She has a hard time with pronunciation and she stutters. But I stressed how important it was that she remember her lines and try to speak clear. If she stutters just breath deep and keep on moving. I kept saying how everyone would be counting on her.

For weeks this kid practiced. She broke words down and worked and worked and finally had her lines memorized and she was saying them clearly enough that anyone listening could understand! I can't begin to tell you how proud she was of herself or how proud I was.

But there have been some "kinks" in the holiday program plans. For starters I don't "work" but I do have 3 kids. Two of which are at different schools 45 minutes away from our home and subsequently the Girl Scout meeting area. A rehearsal was set for 5pm. But with me not even picking up B until 5 it made it hard to be there on time. I would be late.

Then B had oral surgery scheduled. The surgery wouldn't leave a lot of recovery time before the rehearsal but she may be ok for the program. My biggest concern was leaving the other girls in the lurch if she couldn't make it. So as a courtesy I told the other troop leader, who was running this whole holiday thing, what was going on and asked if we can get an understudy "just in case". I probably should have just kept my big mouth shut. She said she would find a girl "just in case". We left it at that.

But she was so excited and proud of her progress and ability to participate we rescheduled the surgery... to be held just days before Christmas. That's right. She was willing to give up Christmas dinner and all the yummy food that it brings for these 2 lines in the crappy program. But if she was willing to make the sacrifice who was I to say otherwise.

So the night of rehearsal (which was just the girls at the park, no set up or stage or props) I drove like a mad women to get there with B reciting her lines the whole time. When we arrived (late because they started the rehearsal at 5 when even our meetings don't start till 6) I told B to jump in.

That's when we were told her part was given away. What happened to "just in case"? I swear if it had been quieter you could have heard B's heartbreak even if you couldn't see the hurt in her eyes. She held it though and didn't cry. I asked her to be a student director but there was little for her to do in that capacity so she just sat there which I could tell was not fun watching everyone else preform in a program she had practiced for. Then I told her to jump in and try to sing... but she focused so hard on the lines she had to say she didnt' know the words to the songs so all she could do was move her mouth and try to catch a few words. Then when the girl who was given her lines went up I saw her eyes fill with tears. She blinked them back and I could tell it really upset her.

The other troop leader said I told her to give the part away. I didnt' argue because even though I didn't think I did... I do forget what I send out so for the sake of argument I didn't say otherwise. And then she explained to B that it wouldn't be fair to give the part back. "That would be hurting the other girl just to make B feel better." Well... the other girl originally didn't even want a part and the other girl didn't spend weeks practicing and the other girl doesn't have to work as hard to remember 2 simple lines and the other girl had the part for 1 hour not 2 months and the other girl wasn't even asked if she minded giving the part back! And I know I sound mad at "the other girl" but I'm really just mad at the situation.

So we left and B broke down in the car. I asked her what she wanted to do and she said "I dont' want to go and watch all my friends if I can't do it too." I told her I understood and would let her decide what to do. Then she sobbed saying things like "I tried so hard" "I just want to be in the show".  I explained that none of this had to do with how hard she tried or how well she did. It was because of me saying we needed a back up plan. I apologized and she just cried saying "It's not your fault mommy". Great, now I really feel like shit.

I'm so angry. So when I got home after telling the other troop leader that B didn't want to go and I wouldn't make her under the circumstances I checked my emails and they did ask for an understudy... not a replacement. James thinks maybe the "swift replacement" had to do with B's ability to do the lines with her stutter and all. I don't think so... and I'd hate to think that but no matter what the reason my kid is hurt and disappointed. She doesn't know if she even wants to do Girl Scouts anymore. Worst part is now she has to have her mouth operated on right before a Christmas... So when everyone is eating ham and potatoes she will be eating applesauce and for what?!?! Not a damn thing.

One part of me wants to tell her to be the bigger person and to stick it out at least the rest of the year or give it a month more and see how she feels. But the other part knows I probably wouldn't in the same situation plus this part also knows we have such a crazy schedule losing one activity would be a huge relief.

So do I try to teach her to turn the other cheek or to take the easy route and quit? I don't know. For now though she's upset so I will see what course she selects naturally and go from there. But I don't think I'll mind if she wants to tell them to take their troop and shove it. I could use the break if nothing else.

1 comment:

  1. I would wait and see how she feels after Christmas. It's not easy to let your kids give up on something but if she's not happy there's no point in making her stay.