Monday, September 14, 2009
This has been a banner week for reactivity in the news. First, there was Joe Wilson's notorious "You Lie!" outburst and now, there is Serena Williams' infamous meltdown at the US Open. Surely you've heard about it by now - Serena was down 30-15 in the semifinal of the US Open. She was called for a foot fault on her serve by the line judge which brought her opponent, Kim Clijsters, within one point of victory.
And Serena LOST it. I mean, lost control of all rational behavior. She walked over to the line judge and verbally abused her in an effort to... well, I'm not really sure what she was hoping to gain. But I can tell you what ended up happening. Because she was so upset about losing a point she reacted in an immature way which caused her to ...lose another point.
Not just any point, mind you - MATCH POINT. Watch it here Then, in a press conference, she doesn't even sound remorseful! Her response, "People do way worse things out there."
Ouch. Cringeworthy. She embarrasses herself and takes away what should have been a great moment for Clijsters and the crowd who had cheered them both on. Granted, it was a rough call. It came at a terrible time. But, such is life.
We can't control the bad breaks that come our way. But we can control how we handle ourselves when they do. The truth is, I have probably handled myself just as immaturely at times when my kids (or my husband) "push my buttons", I just didn't have the whole world watching.
It is my sincere hope that Serena learns from this - that we all do. Pausing before reacting can save you a few match points and a whole lot of heartache.