Friday, June 4, 2010


I have a couple of friends with older children- middle school/high school aged- and all they do is sit at their kids' games.

Softball, soccer, baseball, basketball... every evening, on the bleachers. Weekends? Tournaments. One to two FULL DAYS of more bleachers.

And I want my girls to have the opportunity to play whatever sports they want, and be in choir and band and school plays, and join clubs etc. But with all of those things- minus the sports- it's just a matter of getting the kid to and from the practice/rehearsal/meeting. Any sort of performance happens once a season- at most.

Sports, though. Ugggg. It's like, a game a minute or some shit.

When I was growing up, I wasn't into sports much at all. My dad was a long-distance runner, my brother was in wrestling and cross country, and I stood around in left field with a glove on my head played softball. My younger two siblings did a few sports too, but I was out of the house by then.

I don't even remember if my parents were at my games. I mean, I know they came to some... Then again, I was probably hoping they WOULDN'T come; less witnesses when you strike out and all that jazz.

My own daughters are not exactly athletically inclined either. Their Phy Ed report cards always make David and I laugh: O+ for attitude, participation, etc*. Wonderfully cheerful comments punctuated with SEVERAL!!!!!! exclamation points!!!!! about how lovely they are to have in class. And then, you flip to the other side and see they ran the mile in 18 minutes and could do less than ZERO pull-ups.

(*O is for outstanding.)

For now we have a "one activity at a time" rule. This winter it was gymnastics (which they love and are average at.) Over the summer we relax that rule a little, since lots of things overlap. They are taking tennis, swimming lessons, and a theater class.

I know that at some point, however, they may find a sport that they love. And of course, we'll back them 100%. I'll even buy a big ol' bag of sunflower seeds and one of those fancy bleacher chairs with a back. I'll cheer my little heart out.

(Wait... are the sunflower seeds just a stereotype, or are they actually required? They make my tongue hurt...)

But I can't say I'm looking forward to it.

I can think of 48592904 other things to do with my evenings/weekends. Ya know?


LoriD said...

With our kids, they get 1-2 activities each during the academic year and 1 (soccer) over the summer. We try to bunch most of the academic year activities on weekends, but the summer activities during the week so our weekends are free. There's a crummy period right now where the academic year and summer activities overlap, but I'm looking forward to our free weekends in the next couple of weeks.

We've said no to any opportunities that have come up for Rep/Travel teams - that's when the sport really becomes your life.

Marie Green said...

Stay away from traveling teams... NOTED. ;)

d e v a n said...

Yeah, I could have written this exact post - except the boys actually do seem to have their dad's athletic ability and not MINE (which is none. haha)
I even played left field aka put her out there where she can't do much harm.

Sarah said...

couldn't agree more. My husband's cousin's family has their son in a traveling hockey team and both their girls in traveling, competitive dance teams and it is NUTS all the running around, eating on the road, and completely losing their weekends that they do. NO THANKS. I don't even CARE if it's depriving my kids- they get one thing apiece, and it ain't gonna be an on-the-road thing, and that is IT.

Kristin.... said...

My oldest plays hockey in the fall and softball in the spring. Both involve travel for us but except for hockey tournaments, the travel is pretty light. My son plays hockey, but for now it's only at one rink. Hockey takes up a LOT of our weekend time, especially since my husband is my daughter's assistant coach for her team and runs the entire program my son is in. The twins and I spent lots of time at the rinks.
However, I am glad that my kids are interested in sports, because I never was. Sure, it gets irritating, especially since I'm on my own so much and hockey is a long season. But as long as they want to keep playing, we'll keep it up. I'm sure I'll be saying "whoa Nellie" once my twins get involved and I can only be in so many places at one it is, my son's t-ball and my daughter's softball games are on the same nights, same times, different fields, and my husband is my daughter's coach (so he never sees our son play and I never see my daughter play). Such is the life of a hockey/softball/t-ball mama.