Thank you so much for sharing with me! You mentioned things I hadn't even thought about but were equally as true. I, too, struggle with resentment. I know it's not right. I want to simply be happy for her friends successes. But it's so hard to watch folks who, while truly talented and deserving, never had the struggle of injuries to set them back. To always be relearning what they already had. My daughter was on top of the world. She had nothing but sunshine ahead of her with her talent and where she had gone so far. So, yes, it's not mature or right, I get that, but yes, there is resentment watching those she was ahead of bypass her while she got to condision through an injury. Her last team banquest was supposed to be her night. They make a big speech about the graduating senior. But, while she got her speech, she was overshadowed by the announcement of a talented teammate making a D1 commitment. She didn't have her night. It was like she was already gone and forgotten. (She had continued to stay at the gym and condition / coach during her senior year after her ankle injury because she and her coach always wanted her to be a gymnast through her graduation). Right now, I'm going through the tug of war between watching all these gymnastics clips on Instagram then deleting anything gymnastics related that I was following. I love gymnastics. I don't want to lose that. But then I don't know if i can bear to love it right now. Does it make it better or worse to watch similarly talented girls, teammates, etc. Thank you for sharing with me. It helps so much to not be alone, even though I have to get past this. It helps to know that there are others that have been here and that I'm not just this woman who needs counseling.This is almost my story. We didn’t have the college visits lined up, but I wanted her to finish the season I had just paid for—-new uniform, new floor routine, meet fees. She could have done beam and floor with one or no arms, I even had a list of skills that would fulfill all level 10 requirements that required no arms. But she refused. It was like a death in the family. I cried. She rebelled. It was the middle of her senior year and too late to play other sports at high school, even track. She had been offered a scholarship to a college to be on their gymnastics team, they made promises, they knew she was having elbow surgery and they were fine with it; then a week after her surgery just texted her and basically said “Never mind.” I know it crushed her, but she acted like it didn’t. That didn’t help and was a terrible way to treat her. She basically rebelled and cut her family out of her life for 2 years. I could only watch her at the gym as she was now a coach and her sister was still there. She wouldn’t even acknowledge me or any of us for over a year, and believe me when I say that I didn’t even push her to keep going in the sport, I just mourned by myself when I thought about it, and drove myself crazy with what should have been, what could have been, what wasn’t fair.
Her teammate of 8 years went to that school I mentioned and competed for them. 2 other teammates also got full scholarships to other schools. Do you know I couldn’t even look at their Facebook pages or Instagram for a couple years without a feeling of resentment? I wanted to be happy for them, I knew I should be, but I couldn’t help the resentment, because it “wasn’t fair!”. And I couldn’t say a word because I’d have been judged as “that mom” and an awful person. And I still had a little one in the sport, and when they hung up the college banners for ODD’s teammates in the gym, I went home and cried because she should have been up there too. I still tear up when I watch her old videos.
I will never judge a parent who mourns for what could have been in gymnastics, or who is having a hard time letting go, because I was there and if you weren’t, you just can’t understand it. You can tell us all what we should be doing and saying, you can tell us all day that “it’s not your sport/decision/life,” but it doesn’t change the feelings and emotions we have and did have.
The Bible says, “Hope deferred makes the heart sick.” And how true it is in this case.
I’m okay now, but it took about 3 years to let go of the resentment. Now it’s just regrets. Regrets that we didn’t take the vacation we’d planned the week she broke her foot at practice; regrets about choosing the wrong doctor for another injury that ruined her arm; regrets that she didn’t retire sooner and could have tried another sport in high school; regrets that Her dreams didn’t work out the way she’d planned. I’m happy for all the girls now that are still getting scholarships. I‘ve made my peace, but it takes time. And people telling me to get over it would not have helped me through it. So take heart, Mama, you will get through this too. Just don’t chase after your daughter and insist she talk to you. Hopefully you both can get make it through to the other side and emerge with an intact relationship. Don’t beat yourself up over your feelings, because they are real and valid. Just like everything that’s hard, it will take time, but you’ll be okay.