Monday's Musings

Monday’s Musing: The Green Eyed Monster

Jealousy. That’s right. A capital J for Jealousy. It starts in childhood and continues into adulthood. And it’s getting on my last nerve. If you follow me on Facebook, you may know that my daughter, Cat, is training for the Youth Mustang Challenge. Just over a month ago, we picked up her assigned baby mustang and she has been working with the horse every day since then.

And yet, the ugly green eyed monster has reared its head. Again. Last week, she was attacked on social media by someone. When her friends jumped in and began defending her, they, too, were attacked. Later that evening, one of the mother’s contacted me and began berating me about Cat. “Of course your daughter was attacked. Everything is about Cat, Cat, Cat.”

Say wha’? Who, exactly, is telling the mother that? Could it be her own daughter? “I don’t know who your daughter has in her back pocket to get all of this media attention…” the mother continued.

Me, that’s who.

The entire program was intended to demonstrate how working with horses builds confidence in young children while rescuing animals that are, otherwise, headed to the slaughterhouse. This program was a pilot to be duplicated in future years with other riders. I will not apologize for my professional background and extensive education in marketing. Maybe someone else has an expertise in psychology or finance. If they use that to benefit their own child, I doubt anyone would grumble. But turn on that spotlight and suddenly the green eyes glow in the surrounding darkness.“…and sponsors!” the mother added with a huff.

Hmmm. That’s ironic to mention because that’s exactly what the social media bully said. And, to answer both of them: Cat is not making money from this. That’s a ridiculous claim. As for the sponsors, they happen to be part of the community and they are supporting a little girl’s dream…not financially but emotionally!

What is it with people?

As a child becomes successful in following her dreams—which, for Cat, is to be a horse trainer—she gets put down? By an adult?

Oh, it’s not the first time Cat has been on the receiving end of green-eyed monsters. Nor is it the first time she has experienced heartache from little girls and their parents. I’m only thankful that
she has a healthy environment to follow her dreams. She drinks bottled water (not booze), chases horses (not boys), and wears riding clothes (not crop tops and super short mini-skirts). Oh, and let’s not forget that she has good friends at the barn that support her for who she is and not for what they can get out of her.

She’s not perfect. Frankly, she’s a bit of a messy creature at home and eats too much ice cream. She can be loud and unruly. But she’s not “cruel” or self-absorbed, although she does like to take selfies. She’s a thirteen-year-old that has a passion for horses, sticks up for bullied kids at school, and loves her little group of friends with a fierce loyalty. Having been abandoned by “friends” in the past and left on her own during the initial part of my cancer treatment, she knows pain. And she also know that comes with the territory of walking to the beat of her own drum.

She sacrifices a lot in order to follow that tune, a melody that is full of rainbows, butterflies, and unicorns on most days. She’s happy to share her world with others, but she also feels the pain of people who want only for their own child and don’t think about how selfish they are in leaving a trail of heart-broken children in their path.

People make choices in life and those choices often impact the outcome of what we consider to be happiness. Maybe a child is an Honor student or exceptional soccer player. Maybe the family skis in Colorado or take trips abroad. Or maybe they spend the summers at the beach or a foreign country. Perhaps they shouldn’t because not all of us can?

Please.

Here’s the bottom line. I’m not going to begrudge Cat this experience. Nor am I going to deny it for other deserving riders. We are learning as we go along and that knowledge will be applied to next year’s participants. If they, too, are willing to work every day, study horse training every night, and maintain good (if not great!) grades at school, excellent! But they better have a thick skin because someone somewhere will have something awful to say about it, perhaps because they cannot make such a commitment or don’t like other girls getting attention for their hard-work and success.

And believe me…they will get attention for such a commitment. Besides writing, that’s what I do: market.

That is something that I will not apologize for.

2 thoughts on “Monday’s Musing: The Green Eyed Monster

  1. Sarah, I am so sorry for what others are putting Cat thru – her peers and now, their parents! really? Parents need to know what unseemly conduct is going on with their own children – stop being only their friend and be a parent…..someone who nurtures and guides their children to be all the good they can be and not side with them and get caught up in their mean, hurtful childish games which, I might add, allow them to become mean, hurtful adults.
    Prayers for Cat – she has my thumbs up! Congrats to her for this latest feat! She is amazing and can do all things through Christ who strengthens her! And all things includes rising above those nasty hateful people and glorying in the life God has given her. You go, girl.
    Praying for you, Sarah. Thank you for sharing your writing ability with the world. Love your books – love you.

  2. I was iniially going to say, “this is just unbelievable!” Unfortunately, it’s not! It is the human female rearing her ugly head once again. I say female, because most of the time these situations are instigated by females. I’ve watched little boys, big boys and men go through life basically blowing things off and not letting little things bother them. Women? I am at times ashamed of the gender. It’s starts early, that petty jealousy over a little girl’s toys, clothes, blah, blah, blah….. Mommies are usually the ones setting the examples, and so it goes. Little girls emulate what they observe. It’s sad to say, but over the years I have isolated myself from most women because of this very thing. They perpetuate trouble.

    Sarah, you’ve been through this more than your share of times, and I have too. I wish there was an answer to this age-old problem, but I’m afraid that there isn’t. Moms who are setting beautiful and positive examples for their children are in the minority unfortunately, and oftentimes they end up abused and hurt by the not-so-nice females. It’s shameful that an adult woman chooses to point fingers and criticize your daughter for following her heart. Her daughter is obviously emulating her role model, and sharing her nasty habits with her friends. I’m praying that Cat isn’t taking all of this too seriously. She has strong role models, and she’s a darling girl who deserves credit where credit is due, not criticism. Hug the dear child for me!

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