Refereeing on the Field of Play

I am not sure how I became a referee.  I have no professional training, no skills, or even an aptitude toward determining winners vs. losers.  I am not adept at breaking up the ensuing battle when the determined loser makes a final plea to state his or her case.   With my small, even petite, frame, I do not have the physical stature required of most referees.  My soft voice, with its former honeyed tones, and bright smile that regularly adorned my face have been replaced by a raspy yell and snarling grimace with lips permanently persed in a thin line.  To adapt to my newly appointed position, my demeanor has also evolved.  No longer fun-loving and carefree, Referees are always “on-guard” I have learned – listening, watching, and waiting for the next play.  The Players on my game field scream “Mom” when they are unable to call the shot.  I never knew until now that the title I answer to mostly is also synonymous with “Warden” or “Meanie”.  In my memory of being mothered, “Mom” meant Friend and represented a caretaker wielding unconditional love and never-ending hugs.  I am not sure when “Mom” came to mean something else entirely.  Occasionally, I see glimmers of the positive side to this epithet.  For now, I am an unwitting, struggling Referee to two of the best players in the game.

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