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What I Didn't See Made Me Proud

Changed with the permission of Jeffrey Kerns, Ed. D.

As a father, I am bursting with pride tonight after my daughter's soccer tournament. The girls fought hard and gave their best. However, on this day the other team earned the hard fought victory.

I was/am bursting with pride even though I observed her getting benched for a half for not playing to her fullest potential. It was this benching that allowed her to demonstrate her true character, leadership, and commitment to the team.

She cheered for her teammates as enthusiastically on the sideline as she does on the field. She put the team goal of winning in front of her personal accomplishments. She demonstrated that what a leader contributes on the field is just as important as the emotional contribution from the sideline.

I know she wanted to be out there to prove she could do it, she wanted to earn the right to be on the field contributing to the team. Her competitive drive and intestinal fortitude was burning in her eyes as she waited for that opportunity to "prove it." As I watched her cheer, encourage, and remain fully engaged on the sidelines she proved by her actions that she is willing to fulfill any role that is beneficial for the team. But then again, I expect to see those things from her.

However, it was what I didn't see that made me extremely proud of her last night. I didn't see her pouting or secretly hoping her teammate would fail. I didn't observe her once question the coach’s decision or claim it wasn't fair. I didn't see her mope between halves/games or hang her head in defeat. When she came back in I didn't see doubt, fear, or worry in her eyes. I didn't see her back down from her national champion competitors. I didn't see any hint of a behavior that would hurt the culture of the team.

Sometimes what a man doesn't see makes him prouder than what he does.

Read the original article HERE.


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