The Sporting Life

This past weekend saw the youngest child beginning T-Ball while the oldest played her first soccer game of the season.  It could have been worse. My daughter’s basketball team made the recreational league playoffs.  They earned a first round bye so did not play on Saturday.  She plays tonight.

As I sat in the freezing wind by the practice field last Thursday, I wondered how did this happen to me?  I partially blame my best friend, who cursed me back in High School.  She said I would be the soccer mom and she would be the dance mom simply because I took dance classes and she played soccer.  At least the dance studio is warm.

I’ve resigned myself to the role of “Sport Mom” because my kids do enjoy getting outside and being active.  When it’s not raining or freezing or both, my youngest and I play soccer on the sidelines while my daughter practices.  We both get a little exercise.  Sometimes, I even get a chance to catch up on email or do a little reading.

I love seeing my children’s’ confidence grow with each season, as they master skills that once seemed too tricky.  I love the support they get from their teammates.  I’ve been fortunate thus far that we haven’t encountered the “too hard” yelling coaches and overly competitive parents that sometimes dominate the news.  Instead, I’ve encountered caring coaches who want to make sports fun for the kids, while teaching them the fundamentals.  I’ve seen parents cheer for good gamesmanship and effort.

But of all the things I’ve been surprised by in my role as a “Sport Mom,” it is this.  Real life recreational sports are not a laundry commercial.  The kids get a little dirty, but nothing like those mini-horror movies to promote stain removal.

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