Posts Tagged ‘champions’
An elevator ride that’s too short?
Who ever heard of that? We all stare at the numbers on the panel waiting for our floor # to flash and then push out the doors rapid-fire. No matter how few floors, elevators always seem too slow, like watching a pot of water come to boil.
But today the elevator ride was too short. Too quick for me to act.
I’m in Denver, in the midst of some of the tallest young ladies under 20 I’ve ever seen. It is the US national volleyball tournaments and I’ve been surrounded by these impressive teens everywhere I go. Healthy, clean cut, pleasantly mannered, each having lots of fun with family & friends.
Except one, who looked about 16.
She followed me into the elevator, then her parents. They stood in front of us with their back to her. Their daughter. Dad started saying she had her worse day ever, clearly talking about her performance in the day’s match. She said her serves were bad but her total day wasn’t bad. Not everything she did was bad. Her mom scoffed, glancing at her and made some cutting wisecrack. They stomped out of the elevator deriding her, and she following in their dust saying Fine, be that way.
When it first started, I waited to see how she reacted to them. Amazingly competent. Clearly hurt and hurting badly, yet maintained composure and didn’t lash out at them. They couldn’t see how hurt she was BECAUSE THEY WOULDN’T LOOK AT HER OTHER THAN TO GIVE HER PARTING GLARES, but surely, as parents, they knew it in their hearts. I tried to open my mouth, to tell her how honored I was to be next to one of the best in the entire country regardless of how lousy her day was. The doors opened and they left before I could croak out a sound.
She shuffled behind them with her head hanging down. Isn’t it bad enough to know her teammates will likely rib her too? That, in her eyes, the whole world saw her lousy serves? That she needed their hugs more than anything today and instead they ganged up on her like bullies? With parents like that, who needs enemies?
The elevator ride was just too short.