I Can’t Do a Cartwheel, But I Can Spell

When I was in junior high I tried out for cheerleading. I should have talked myself out of it. Sometimes I let me do stupid things. I asked my current self, “What in the world were you thinking?”

I was just hoping for a miracle. More likely, I probably just wanted to be “something.” Those were the years when this late-bloomer felt fairly nonexistent. I wasn’t allowed to wear make-up and couldn’t do a cartwheel. I was doomed for life.

After trying out I remember the disappointment of finding my name missing from the list and trying to hide my tears. I had talked myself into believing I could do something that I clearly was not cut out to do. One good thing came out of it – I learned that contrary to popular belief, one cannot do anything they put their mind to, and that’s okay.

I would have excelled at one aspect of cheerleading – I am a good speller. I didn’t think about that way back then, but having watched two grandsons complete their (undefeated) JV football season, with the accompanying cheerleading squad, I am convinced that spelling is more important than backflips. Those girls have S-P-I-R-I-T! And those boys were A-G-G-R-E-S-S-I-V-E!

I informed my household (husband, sister, mother) that I was going to follow the example of the cheerleader. Even though I never mastered the splits or a cartwheel, I can spell; and they should expect more of it. If I could only recapture those days as a mom, I could have responded differently to the baffled look that kids give you. Instead of saying, “Do I have to spell it out for you,” I just would have.

The next night when it was time to eat, I simply chanted:

D-I-N–N-E-R – Dinner. Yeah, it’s time for dinner. Whoo!

In the middle of the table was a piping hot dish, straight from the oven:

Red hot – the food is red hot! The food is R-E-D H-O-T, red hot!

When we finished praying, “When I say ‘A,’ you say ‘men.’ A-men. A-men.”

I think football season ended just in time.

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3 Comments

  1. So sorry you didn’t make cheerleaders. Barb L’s big blow was when she didn’t make pom pom girls.

    Life can be very hard.

    On Thu, Oct 14, 2021 at 4:29 AM Life on the Lighter Side wrote:

    > Bonnie Anderson posted: ” When I was in junior high I tried out for > cheerleading. I should have talked myself out of it. Sometimes I let me do > stupid things. I asked my current self, “What in the world were you > thinking?” I was just hoping for a miracle. More likely, I probab” >

    Reply
    • Yes, life can be hard, but who knows, I may have broken something I need (like my back) if I had made cheerleader. Don’t tell Barb, but I did make the pom pom squad in high school. It turns out I’m a good marcher. I can’t believe she didn’t make it. I do feel for her. Those young scars!

      Reply
  2. I dunno. I see a bunch of those games crowding out the stuff I really enjoy on television, right now.

    Reply

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