continued When he is ready, you can also help your son re-frame the experience: rather than ending with a loss, encourage him to look at the whole season, the whole team, and his whole career on the soccer field. He is most likely inconsolable because soccer is and has been a touchstone in his life – help him to remember how the game has shaped his character and how his character will shape his future.
The end of seasons and eras in our children’s lives suggests the growing, and possibly separating, that we know will happen, but somehow, parents and children seem surprised every time they reach a new “last time”.
I (Michele) recently finished reading The Zahir, the second book by Brazilian author, Paulo Coelho, my Book Club has read. We mention this only to point out that change, loss, and disappointment are universal - your son is maturing into the man he will be for the rest of his life, and his response, both short term and long term, to loss (with some help from his parents) can help guide him through many future moments of loss and joy.
“It is always important to know when something has reached its end. Closing circles, shutting doors, finishing chapters, it doesn’t matter what we call it; what matters is to leave in the past those moments in life that are over.”
— Paulo Coelho, The Zahir
And one more thing to remember, it is these growing moments that hurt most at the time, but really teach us the most in the long run. He can maybe even write his college essay based on his latest experience!!
A S K Style & Substance:
Michele Armani and Sally Meisenheimer
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