One of the hardest things to deal with as a parent is seeing your child hurt, either physically or mentally. This week was a tough one. My daughter, who's a freshman in high school, spent the last 2 weeks in Cheerleader Boot Camp, in preperation for trying out for next year's squad. This has been a dream of hers for years! To be on the cheer squad and date the hot quarterback is her idea of the ultimate high school experience.
Even though it was never a dream of mine (far from it!), I supported her wholeheartly. She had to be at school at 6:45 everyday for the 2 week "camp", which meant getting up at 5:30 to get ready to leave by 6:15. She put her heart and soul into these practices and did everything that was asked of her.
They had to make a poster with a picture of themselves and words like "I'm enthusiastic!" They had to be interviewed by the head cheerleaders, "What would you bring to the team?" They had to dress up for school one day to prove they were role models for the school. They had to make their own pom poms to show their creativity. My daughter did all these things and did them well and with 100 percent enthusiasm. I've never seen her try so hard and be so excited about anything. And you guessed it, she didn't make the squad.
The cruelest part of all, was the way they let the girls know the outcome of all their hard work. They were to go home and wait by the phone. If they made it, the phone call would be to the parents, asking them if their daughter could be kidnapped for the night (a sleepover) or a phone call to the kid, saying "sorry, try again next year". They had to have their bag all packed, just in case. I found this to be so humilating to the girls who didn't make it.
And the final worst of the worst parts was, 2 of her friends made it, and she was the one who talked them into trying out!
We had a few rough days, lots of tears and hurt feelings, but the kid is amazing. She's back to her normal, happy self - ready to take on the world again. I think it may take me longer to get over it than it did her. I wanted to fix it somehow, go to the school, talk to the principal, demand something! Of course, I couldn't do that, the girl was already humilated enough. So, life goes on, we survived.
If you read all of this, my blogging friends, thanks for listening, this was a long post for me!