This was a tricky one.
Was paired with a 10-year-old named Leo yesterday and he began the afternoon exceedingly grumpy. He was snappish and irritable and looked as though he hated that he was at our event and would rather be home in front of his PlayStation.
For the first time since joining @esports_ph a year ago, I had no idea what to do.
Then I noticed a few things...he couldn't make eye contact, he didn't like it when any of the coaches would hold his hand, he couldn't focus.
So I looked for his mom, introduced myself, and asked her which mental disability he had.
Afterwards all I had to do was say these four words to Leo and everything changed: "I have ADHD too." Boom...breakthrough! Almost instantly he started smiling and joking around with me, he'd hold my hand wherever I went, he'd help me lead the other kids, and even made a special handshake ala LeBron every time he'd make a shot in our basketball drills.
It felt like magic. ♻
Sat Leo's mom down and told her that I, too, had been diagnosed with pretty severe ADHD and that I need to be on medication everyday for the rest of my life to hit the max potential of my daily focus. Told her that it used to be very hard for me, but I conquered it. And once I started to enumerate the things I do for a living -- the companies I own and run, the pieces I produce and publish, the advocacies we push forward (all with the basic intetion of saying anyone can overcome an Attention Deficit and ultimately function at a high frequency regardless of how bad the diagnosis is and so long as he really tries) -- oh man, the look on her face was pricelessly emotional.
At the end of the day, Leo pulls me aside and says, "Next month, sa blue team ulit ako, Kuya Franco." (I wanna be on the blue team again next month, Franco.) I asked him why.
His reply: "Siyempre, para magkasama uli tayo. Salamat ha." ('Cause I wanna hang with you again, of course! Thank you.) 🙈
Yooo. It never fails. Always AT LEAST one moment every session that melts your heart like dark chocolate in hot coffee. It never ever gets old and ALWAYS feels fantastic.
If interested to volunteer, click on the page. We got room for anyone with a heart.