Monday, September 12

While I was away...

Something way bad happened.
While I was at MOA Scrapfest (more on that with photos in my next post), there was craziness back here at home. My little Max is on an outdoor soccer team every spring and fall for the past 4 years and he loves the sport very much. It is his only activity really and definitely the only sport he truly enjoys playing. He keeps telling me he is going to be a professional soccer player and I keep telling him that requires something called...practice. For the past couple seasons, Max's dad has chipped in as the assistant coach and most of the kids are from Max's school. The coach is really good about trying to get the same kids each season because they know each other and usually he tried for kids from the same school so they are even closer. Well, this season we have moved to the 4th and 5th grade section so we have a few new faces. It's nice. New friends, new kids. We had our first practice last Wednesday and I noticed right away that I heard a name that I only heard when Max complained about school. A name that was never muttered without a complaint or some story. In fact, this is the same child who had been picking on Max last year during school that warranted a school visit from me! I had never up until this point even seen this child, but I knew him. I thought it could be trouble, mother's instinct, but I figured that with Max's dad, Alex, there....what could happen? Alex is a police sergeant and really very strict with the kids but they love him. Practice went smoothly, no problems.
I left on Friday, so I missed the first soccer game and that alone gave me such guilt that I knew someone would be getting something special from the Lego store at MOA. Well, on Saturday afternoon I got a call from Alex that something bad had happened at the soccer game..."Max was jumped". I said, "what did you say?" to which he repeated, "Max was jumped." I was shocked and really didn't understand until I heard the story.
Apparently, before the game started, the boys were all warming up and dribbling soccer balls around, pretty typical. Max, being Max, ran up behind this boy and dribbled the ball away from him. As he ran away with the ball, this boy ran up behind him, tackled him to the ground and began strangling him. Then he started punching him in the head and scratching him, just wailing on the kid. As this happened, Alex was across the field getting ready to start the game and saw it happening, he was running across the field to try and save lil' Max. Before he reached the boys, this little boys own father had reached them and socked this kid in the head to get him off Max. Now, mind you all this is going on in the middle of a soccer field with at least 20 nine and ten year olds around and all their parents. Max was bleeding from wear he had been scratched pretty deeply and throwing up. Not a pretty sight, I hear. The other boy was taken by his father and left.
Being Max and hoping for that soccer career, he insisted on playing, of course. So he played a little. Alex wanted him to anyway, just to get his mind on something else. It was pretty traumatic, Max is really upset about it and should be. Even Alex, who is usually the "Aw, he'll shake it off" parent is really affected by this. We got calls from parents that weren't even there who heard how horrid it was to witness.
I am actually glad that I wasn't there, I don't think I would have been as calm as Alex was. Plus, just hearing about it and dealing with the aftermath has really affected me. I feel so bad for my Max, he just keeps saying "I got hurt, my feelings hurt" and it just breaks my heart. But, I also feel bad for this other boy. What goes on with a child that makes them act that violently? And Alex told me he wasn't even remorseful after his father hit him and pulled him away, he was still filled with rage. This poor child. This poor family.

Max looks like he got beat. Bruises in the shape of fingerprints on his neck. Deep scratches all around his face and neck, not a pretty sight. (good thing pictures were last week)
I also had to go to the school this morning because he is in Max's grade at school to make sure that they keep an eye on them. The recess situation at school is not the best and so many bad things happen at recess to begin with. The principal told me that this child is already flagged and they keep a very close eye on him, "they have to." (how sad)
I am not sure what will happen with soccer, the coach isn't sure how these things are handled. I know he talked to one person from the league and she told him "they can't just kick kids off teams". Alex has said that if this child is allowed to stay, Max will not be on the team, which is even worse. That would really surprise me though. Plus, one of the moms told me that the parents usually pull this child out of activities once he is misbehaving, it's their solution.
Just so sad these things happen. I don't want Max to take all the anger he has toward this child and misdirect it to "become" like this child. Don't really know how to make things right with this one. Just do the mom thing, I guess. And I bought him that crazy diablo he wanted.
My complete review and photos of Scrapfest in my next post....

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