I Know I Am Intelligent Because I Know That I Know Nothing .... Socrates

Friday, July 30, 2010

Growing and Dreaming

It’s been a while since I have written. For me, I find writing comes from either turbulent times in my life or from moments of utter peace and tranquillity where I am able to reflect within. I guess more recent times have been routine and non-eventful so I have tended to get lost in that rut called life, a period where everything is bland, non-eventful and just is ! A period that when you finally wake from it, it feels like you have been sleepwalking and all you can remember is the beginning of the journey and the end, everything else is lost in a hazy mist of apathy.

I was awoken this time by my sisters Blog “ Living Simple In Bauple ”, my sister has a story to tell like all of us, a story that has sat dormant within her for all of her life, quietly moulding and shaping her life and her life decisions and building in strength within until inevitably released. If you haven’t already, I encourage you to read Wendy’s blogs and story, all life’s stories have common threads and I’m sure you will not only enjoy her journey but also gain a reflection into your own life’s journey at some stage while reading.

My son is growing fast, both mentally and physically. He has just turned 13 and is already 6ft tall. I find myself looking at him at times with sympathy and personal memories of pain and frustration. I to was a tall solid 13 year old, the type that on the outside is a man but on the inside is still a boy, the type that is constantly finding confusion and frustration in everyday dealings with the world.

Because of my size I tried to act like a man and to fit in but as they say, you can’t put a wise head on young shoulders and more times than not I spoke and acted in ways that were inappropriate due to lack of experience. I still remember that sickly feeling of not feeling like you belong, either in your age group of peers or the older age group which you so agonisingly want to belong to. Of not even belonging in your own body.

As part of growing so fast, growing can not only be frustrating but painful and uncoordinated. Due to growing so much so fast my son has literally outgrown his body, his bones have grown so fast that his muscles / ligaments and tendons have not had sufficient time to grow and stretch naturally. At a basic level this makes his muscles at ¾ stretch even when in a relaxed posture. At a higher level it is effecting his posture and movement at a more fundamental level. Now none of this is life threatening and he will develop out of it all with time but the disassociation with his own life at the moment and his inability to feel comfortable socially or in his body will affect his soul and personality for ever.

I have just joined us both up to the local gym. Me, well I desperately need to loose a lot of weight and to take control of my life back. For too long I have been willing to just ride my life and see where it will take me. The problem with that is it took me to obesity and a heart attack at 39. As for my son, hopefully if we can get him comfortable in his own skin and feeling like he is in control of his body and life then he may have more strength to control his destiny then I did.
My son’s Rugby team had their final game of the season today, they had not won a game all season until today which they won 26 – 0. It was a great game and your could see that the lights turned on upstairs, they walked on the field not even contemplating a winless season and then naturally played to that mindset. While watching the game I was listening to the other games being played, the results over the loud speakers and to the family and friends cheering on all the games being played. It struck me with an unexpected surprise, It didn’t matter if a team was playing for 1st or to prevent being last, each team was playing in the moment, their own battle and demons and not coming last for the season was every bit as important to these young men as it was to the team playing for the season premiership.

Tonight we have the formal end of season dinner for the Rugby teams, I have no doubt that all the boys will be walking on air after their win today and that their tries and tackles will only grow in strength and speed over the off season ( like all good fishing and hunting stories ). But what it will do is allow them to grow in belief in themselves over the off season so that when they come back next year they will believe in themselves that bit more and believe in each other as a team even more.

After all, we all need the odd win to cling to and dream about.


  1. Thanks Andrew for your words on my current posts. I am just about to write the next one and the outdoor dunny will be explained. HE HE.

    I understand what you are saying about these hairy scary teenage years but the thing that strikes me the most is that you are making more of a difference in getting Dylan through these years than you can even imagine. You won't see that until he comes of age and there is a point that you know that you helped and that you made such a difference.

    What I mean is that a parent can love their child and provide all the neccessary things of life - like food and shelter but the next step is harder. Like from the movie Avatar - this parent doesn't just say hello they say I SEE YOU. I acknowledge you and what you are going through - they take the time to try their hardest to understand the child at the moment they are in. They also love not just when good behaviour is about but they love with every fibre of their being even when the child or child/adult is of course and floundering. They simply never give up.

    That is how I have found parenting. We just don't see what a difference we make until a bit later on.

    And this last sentence is so true and I love it - "After all, we all need the odd win to cling to and dream about."


  2. Andrew ~

    First, as someone who has struggled with weight for years, may I say how very proud of you I am for joining the gym and setting the pace for yourself and your son. Well done!! One day at a time and I KNOW you will do really well.

    I have heard the deep love you have for your boy when reading through past posts. You are a fine dad and should give yourself some well-deserved kudos. Many dads do not take the job as seriously as you do and they will pay the price later. You, however, will reap the rewards of your labor. I can promise you that as one who has been there, done that.

    One last thing. We have a 12 year old daughter, our youngest child, who is much like your Dylan. She is a big, tall girl. At 12, she looks much more like a 16 year old and has since about age 10. The problem is, she is 12 no matter how old she looks. People expect her maturity to be that of a much older child but she is still 12. Here's another promise: Miranda and Dylan will both turn out just spiffy!! I am sure of it because they have parents cheering them on faithfully.

    Ya know, maybe you and Dylan need to come to Oklahoma for a visit. You're welcome anytime. We could talk arranged marriages. :-)