27 January 2011

Back to Base-ics

The other day I ran into Kayci's gymnastics coach and I ended the conversation with something like, God help her, she's built like me and will most likely end up a base.  (For you non-cheer folks out there, a base is the girl who doesn't fly, but she does make it possible for the other girl to fly/be up in the air.)

It wasn't the first time I've said that, and I don't intend it to be ugly.  Just realistic:  Kayci is tall and solid and healthy and beautiful just the way God made her.  While I want her to work hard to reach her goals and dream big...I don't want to set her up for disappointment, either.  Fact:  if she can't do a cartwheel or a handspring or a back handspring or any of those things, she probably won't get far on a cheer squad.  We've already told her she needs to learn the basics if she's serious, and if she's really serious, she'll have to work hard as she gets older.  

That little offhand comment I made to Julie stuck with me and kind of rattled around...and then yesterday it came together in my head.

(image:  Microsoft ClipArt)

When I was a little girl, back in the days when twice-yearly trips to Sears were a BIG deal and Sears still smelled like tires and popcorn, I wanted to be a cheeleader.  (That's not a typo, just thought that's what they were called.)  Not just any cheeleader either:  I wanted to be one of the Derrick Dolls.  I had the shirt (from Sears, natch) and everything.  There was just one problem, which would become clearer and clearer as I grew up:  I was large, uncoordinated, and never learned any skills that would actually come in handy while cheering.  By the time cheer tryouts came at the end of sixth grade, I didn't even try out--trust me when I say, there would have been no point.  I wasn't bitter about it or anything, and I had awesome high school and college experiences.  (Most of you were there, you remember.  Life was good!)  In college, I worked for Student Activities and my boss was in charge of the cheerleaders and dance team.  I'll admit, I envied--and still envy--those little girls who can fly.  And part of me felt a little sorry for the larger girls who would never see any air, and would always be bases.  (You know, the sturdy looking cheerleaders.) 

After I said that to Julie about Kayci being a base, I thought about myself.  Had I ever learned to do a cartwheel or anything fun like that, I might have been a cheerleader.  And I'm 99.99% sure I'd have been a base, holding another girl up at games or linking arms with other girls to catch the tiny girl who could fly up into the air.  And you know what?  I'm okay with that.  I wouldn't have been in college, because I still wished I'd wake up one day and be a 5'2" size 0...wait, no, smaller than a 0.  Have you seen how small those cheer skirts are?  But I digress...

...at this point in my life, I know that God is working on me.  THE VERSE is still stalking me;  this week the Mark version appeared in a book I started reading then put down because it freaked me out that THE VERSE was there in something totally not related to what THE VERSE is about...so I know it's just God getting my attention.  And He's got it.  I've been praying a lot about where I am and where I need to be, and I know that I need to "deny myself"...I need to put my ego and pride aside and focus on being who I am, not WHAT I want to be.  

So where it all ties together, because it's time for carline and I don't have time for a great segue:  here's the thing, over the past couple of days, I've come to realize that I am a base.  That's my role right now in life, to be here to support my family and loved ones, and to build them up.  To provide a strong foundation for our little family and be solid for them.  And, the same thing applies to my team at work:  I've worked with them for years and I've taught them as much as I can.  It's their time to shine...and time for me to stay in the background.  I had quite a day yesterday and I won't go into a lot of detail, but suffice to say, it hit me hard that as much as it's exciting to be a part of something that's going to have a big, lasting impact...it's not my time to be in the spotlight.  I had my time, and it was a great time, but it's someone else's time now.  It's my job right now to make sure that the ladies have the tools they need to succeed and shine, and that they have a firm foundation upon which to build.  That's it.  I'm one of the bases.  

Alas, I don't have a great line to leave you with, either.  This has just been on my mind today and I needed to get it in writing.  I know, I know, that's what drafts are for...but this blog is real--it's my journal, and sometimes my life isn't perfectly tied together with a beginning, middle and end.  Sometimes there's no witty one-liner.  Sometimes it rambles and you end up right where you started.  And sometimes, you just get totally lost.  That's my life.  And I'm okay with that.  

1 comment:

Heather said...

Thank you for everything you do for everyone in your life. You give so much and never expect anything back in return. You are definitely a rock for so many people. You shine in so many ways. If only you realized how much of a difference you make!