My middle daughter’s teacher arrived for our meeting with crutches and a leg brace.
“What happened to you?” I asked.
“Well,” she said. “You are not going to believe it. My son plays highschool football, and each year they have a fundraiser where the parents pay $25.00 and then tour the locker room, get a t-shirt, have the refs go over the calls, and dinner is served…that sort of thing. At one point, the coaches thought it would be fun to have us all go out on the field, get into our sons’ positions and run a few plays…tag, of course. My son is the running back. So, the quarterback handed me the ball, and I began to run down the field. Then, this mother comes out of nowhere and tackles me!”
“You have got to be kidding me,” I said. “This doesn’t sound real. It is more like something that would be in a sit-com or something.”
“No,” she responded. “She tackled me. I went down, and immediately, I knew I was hurt. The coaches all gathered around me, asking me if I was okay, but I did not want to draw attention to myself so I tried to act like I was alright. The woman kept saying, ‘Oh, I am so sorry. I don’t know what got into me. My adrenalin was just pumping, and you guys had already scored and I didn’t want you to score again…'”
At this point, my vivid imagination has painted the picture- two ladies are in their capri pants and flats, running down the field at a fundraiser when one tackles the other one. Really? I mean, what kind of craziness is that?
“What then?” I asked in astonishment.
“Well, they gave me ice, and I tried to go to the dinner, but I was in so much pain I thought I was going to pass out. A friend helped me to the bathroom and I called my husband to come get me. I went to the Bone and Joint Clinic yesterday, and they think my ACL is torn.”
That, my friends is a substantial injury. She could be in for surgery. I feel so bad for her. I wonder what it will be like for her as she sits on the bleachers at the football games with her crutches and brace and sees this woman walk by on her two good legs. I wonder how she will find the courage to be gracious and polite. I wonder what the woman will say when she sees her in that condition game, after game, knowing that her profound lack of self-control was the cause of so much pain.
Most of all, I wonder how our kids will learn self-control if we never model that for them, and what kind of nation we will be when the seeds we have sown into this generation bear fruit.