2013 A Look Back

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I thought it would be great to take a look back at my 2013. Everyone else does it, right? So why not me? The thing is I can’t even remember what I did last week so the chances I remember everything that happened for an entire year; 0 to none.
So what do you do when your memory sucks? Well, you write about what you remember, duh! When I look back at 2013 there are two things that stick out; one good and one not so good. I will start with the not so good. We’re a family that has been involved in youth soccer for the longest time;10 years to be exact. We’ve been blessed with 2 kids who are excellent players.. Their track record thus far speaks for itself. Our experience was always great until 2013. Everyone knows that soccer IS the beautiful sport. Unfortunately this beautiful sport was not so beautiful for the Capparelli’s this past year.
I am a very laid back easy to get along with kind of guy but this past year, this was put to the test. We, as parents, and rightfully so will defend our children to the very end and sometimes that means crossing a line or two or three.
I found myself being an angry man practically all year long but especially during the summer months. We all want what’s best for our kids and it was so aggravating to watch my son, a hard working player, being mistreated not only by some of his teammates but worse his coach. There was a lot of injustices going on with this team.. and as good a man as he tried to be it all started with the coach. He mistreated the loyal, hard working, disciplined players and treated the bullies like royalty. In essence he in fact was a bully himself. When all was said and done, these bullies added no value to the team and in the end they abandoned the team (which quite frankly is the best thing to have happened).

I learned a lot this past year… I learned a lot about myself as a person and I also learned a lot about the people around me. I learned that sometimes it’s best not to have certain people around you.

So what did I learn about myself?
– I was in a dark place for basically the entire summer but I can say that even during that dark period I was always objective (enough) about everything that was happening. I wasn’t blinded by my anger. I saw what I saw. It was as clear as water.
(PS: it goes without saying that my son was in a dark place as well. This whole year was very difficult for him)
– I am pretty proud of the fact that I am as patient as they get but this summer that patience was put to a great test.. a test that I failed a few times.
– I will do whatever it takes to protect my kids and as mentioned, at times that meant crossing a line or two. Do I regret some of the things I said or did during this ‘dark’ period? Yes, I do. But only some. I have no regrets about most of what I said,tweeted or did. Reading the truth hurt some people. Tough.
-I learned that bullying a bully isn’t the answer. High road folks, high road.

What I learned about others…
– As parents, our kids must be priority one but far too many parents on this team had personal agendas that destroyed this team. It was a cancer… they were a cancer. It’s a shame what kids are being thought nowadays. They have no concept of right or wrong. There is too much self entitlement. Thankfully they are all gone now.
– Attention seekers: deep down inside these are people that are just plain and simply insecure.
– There are people who have what I call this ‘faux’ righteousness… they have rights to say and do things that others are not allowed to have.
– There are people who are very gutsy behind a keyboard (ie: facebook)… but will put their head down when they see you on the street or at a field.
– there are people that are plain weasels.. there isn’t a nicer way to put it.
– there are people that live in glass houses… god.. seriously. Take a good look at yourself in the mirror!
– there are people out there who truly can’t handle the truth so they deflect that insecurity onto others.
– there are people who need to really understand what the word ‘loyalty’ means.
– There are people who are quick to throw others under the bus.

Most if not all of these parents hid behind their kids.. “my kid wants..”, “my kid decided…”… when everyone knows that is not the case; puppet masters they are (yoda I am ;)).

we’re human… we’re flawed… I am far from perfect. I know that. I owe no explanation for my flaws… and yes, the same goes for others… but one thing’s for sure, I sleep well at night. I don’t know how some people do.
As I wrote, there were a lot of lessons learned.. things happen for a reason. I think that long term this past year will make my son (and myself) a stronger person. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, right? Exactly. We learn but we must move forward. I can’t control others but I can certainly control who I am, what I do, how I treat others. When I decided to write this post, I asked myself, after all this time why open this can of worms again? Why? Well, i’m not trying to. If anything I want to close the books on this and what better way to do it then to put it down on ‘paper’ (cathartic) and do it day one of a new year, a new beginning. It’s day one of 2014, a blank canvas… time to heal and begin anew.

Enough of the bad, time to end this post on a good note…We hosted a teammate of our son for two months this past summer. It turned out to be the best part of our summer. We learned from him, he from us. Two different cultures. It was amazing. He was a good influence for our son…always trying to keep his spirits up. We, as a family, will always cherish that time. I’m doing that whole experience an injustice by not devoting more of this post to it. It’s just that I do have to end this post at some point ;)… and that point is now.

2014… Bring.It.On!! We are up for the challenge.

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