Thursday, January 24, 2013

Quitting

This word has always been negative to me.

It was something my dad shouted at me 
in the car 
on long road trips.

This was our actual station wagon. The very
back seat faced the other direction
and was out of Dad's arm reach.
When I was bored and making a game of 
getting my youngest brother into trouble 
or making my other brother laugh 
until he wet his pants.
(I was good at that.)

"Quit!" Dad would holler.

Neg. A. Tive.

When I accepted a job after college that
overworked me,
underpaid me 
and played a little too close to the shady-side 
of the proverbial "line" of what was ethical, 
I confided in my dad.

"Don't quit. Stick it out for a least a year," he recommended.

I quit on my 1 year work anniversary.

They gave me a commemorative pin and I handed them a resignation letter.

Then Monte chased me through the parking lot 
to profess his feelings for me.

Not all negative.
(But that's an entirely different story.)

Back to quitting.

We just let Ellie quit basketball.

We were quite torn about it.

Do we force her to stick it out as a character lesson?

You know the whole, we finish what we start thing?

Or do we let her quit because we can actually see the confidence drain right out of her every time she steps into practice or a game with a coach that is a screamer?

Like gets told by the referees to stop yelling at his own girls 
kind of screamer.

Like gets technical fouls called on him 
kind of screamer.

Is this a robot referee?
Creepy.
Like his own daughter cries on the bench a lot 
kind of screamer.

I just don't see how the saying

"Winners never quit and quitters never win"

applies here.

Quitting can be good,

can't it?

The definition actually says it is a release.

Release.

That is how I feel.

Released.

Released from the tension of sitting in the bleachers and biting my own tongue from screaming,

"Sit down and shut up! They are in the 5th grade!"

Actually an opposing coach said something very similar to him a few games ago.

And she was a she.

And it was glorious.

But this is not about revenge.

If it was, I would've been in charge of telling the coach that Ellie was quitting.

No, my very diplomatic husband, Monte,

very wisely
very succinctly
very vaguely
said that Ellie was no longer going to participate in the team.

At first I was like,

What?!

No

…due to the negative coaching style of this team

Or

…in order to preserve the confidence of our 10-year-old daughter

Not even a

…you need help, buddy. 
And, from one man to another, 
stop wearing skinny jeans! 

No, my husband prayerfully sought direction. 

And did the right thing.

I am so thankful I am married to him.

Because I could really have burned a bridge

Oh, let's face it,

massively bombed it.

Over and over again I am reminded 

just because I think it
(and it is correct)

doesn't mean I have to say it

out loud.

Do you really think the complaints 
of one family 
are going to highlight the error of this guy's ways 
and cause him to be 
all sunshine 
and rainbows 
and butterfly kisses?

No.

It would just further corrupt a flawed man.

And we are all flawed!

By the saving grace of Jesus Christ 
we don't get what we deserve every day.

Doesn't this coach need a little grace too?

Monte thought so.
(I am getting there.)

Now Monte did say if this coach pursues a further reason for Ellie's quitting, he will address it.

But he is going to wait for an invitation.

Do you ever step back and thank God

For not getting your own way?




2 comments:

  1. Anonymous3:37 PM

    So good Karmen. Thank you for sharing. We too have let both boys "quit" a sport for various reasons. I struggled for similar reasons you shared yet God was gracious and Nate lead us so well through the situations. Love you! G

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  2. Sumita11:17 AM

    I think our generation was raised with the idea that quitting is bad -- so I have the same struggle with it, but I loved the definition you shared -- release! Awesome, as God wants us to pray about everything and not just base our decisions on some idea that has somehow ingrained itself into our core like quitting is bad -- God does want us to release that which is harmful to us or keeps us in bondage and if we seek His wisdom and guidance, He will direct us rightly -- even if it is to quit! Makes me ask "Lord, are there other areas in which I am operating based on tradition or false beliefs rather than seeking your will?" Thanks for sharing this:)

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