teaching an old dog


Who says teaching an old dog new tricks is impossible? I’m not saying it’s easy, but I think it’s possible. On advice from literary agents who passed on signing me, after dragging my feet for about a year I finally started this blog.

The next pressure was to “social network” in order to support the blog and connect with people that I couldn’t otherwise. My shoes must be getting a bit worn out from dragging them, but this time I only dragged them for about seven months.

If someone would have told me a few years back that I’d be writing publicly every week and be on Facebook, I probably would have laughed at them, however I learned a long time ago to never say never. The words spoken in haste without wisdom are bitter to swallow along with that pride.

Life has a way of taking unexpected turns along the journey. One of those twists was by chance, destiny, fate, or what I consider to be the hand of God.

Kenz was getting ready to start her sophomore year of high school lacrosse, at that time there was only a varsity team and Molly and Sarah were the coaches and had been since the inception at the school several years before. Sarah announced her retirement along with the fact that she was pregnant.

Molly stated she would coach, but only if she had help. Enter my wife… She announced, “I think you should do it.” I responded, “ARE YOU NUTS”!!! I couldn’t believe she could come up with something so absurd.

She later continued, “I don’t know, I just think you should do it for some reason.” I didn’t give it much merit. After all, this was me we were talking about… Impatient, short with people, tough on kids, known to lose my temper at the drop of a hat, busy beyond belief with work, intense and obsessive. These weren’t my words, but I couldn’t argue much with the descriptions and accuracy at the time.

After prodding from my wife and a few of the other parents I’d watched the games with that first season, I told them I’d help as a last resort, that is if they couldn’t find anyone else.

I found myself at the indoor try-outs on an early Sunday morning due to some rainouts the week before. While at the first try-out I discovered something I never knew existed inside me; anxiety…

A bunch of high school girls ranging from freshman to seniors and me about to coach a sport I’d never played… I said to myself in my mind over and over, “I don’t belong here”! “I’m too hardened and calloused from business and life to relate to these kids”! –“Not to mention they’re girls”!!! “I don’t know anything about girls”! “Diane (my wife) should have known that”!!!

I had immediate regret… I knew I’d already made a commitment and couldn’t back out on my word, even if coerced into it by some others. That was one of the first things I tried to teach the girls, keep your word, and give everything you’ve got.

As fate, destiny, chance, or God would have it Molly became pregnant with complications requiring her to be bedridden. So much for hanging around for support. I was it, I thought, “these poor girls.”

My life was never the same after that. All of those girls that year and the girls every year that followed broke my heart. God used those girls to bring out a person I never knew was inside of me.

That time spent with those girls made me a better person, my focus wasn’t just on my family or me, but every single girl and her life I had the opportunity to be part of and have an impact on. I will forever cherish the bonds created that will last a lifetime.

I’m reminded how blessed I am and how many true friends I have as a result of those years spent coaching my girls when I started connecting with people via the social network.

Now God is using my girls in helping to coach and teaching an old dog some new tricks.

Wherever we are, whether spoken or not, we will forever be, “Brother And Sisters In Arms.”

Thank you, Ladies…..