A pat on the backside sent him into the first in a best-of-three match, where he lost, 5-4, however, he was smiling when he came back to me.
“I figured it out,” he said.
“Great, but don’t tell me. Your the fencer, use it,” was my reply. “This could be your last match of the day so make it count.”
Two 5-3 matches later with a “could be your last match,” talk in between, and he was onto the quarterfinals with an upset win. That round started the same way, with me saying, “you know what you’re doing, so just go out and do it. One round is an upset, two rounds is a Cinderella story.”
5-1, 5-2. Onto the semis
We changed nothing in the semifinals (after all, when you are in sports there are superstitions), but the first match was a 5-0 defeat.
“He’s really good,” my son said as he came to his corner. Another 5-0 match and the day was over, but not without the 13th seed in the tournament finishing with a bronze medal.
So the moral to the story is this - sometimes the kids know enough to do it on their own. It can be tough to relinquish that control and dependence that they may have once had on you, and in turn you on them. It very well could take an ah-ha moment like I had at a fencing match, but sometimes you just have to realize that in a situation where they are ready to take the lead themselves, that is just what they need to do. I still gave him all of my support, but also let him know that it was his world and his call.
I think the results speak for themselves.
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