Thursday, September 13, 2012

Soccer?! I don't even KNOW her!


Harrison's been playing soccer for about a month now.  The season started with a big tournament.  No practices.  No instructions.  Just a big tournament.  Harrison hasn't played soccer since he was four years old when the only rules he needed were "Don't touch the ball with your hands.  Kick it into the net."  He found the game surprisingly complicated this time around and it took some time for him to figure out all of the rules.  His team lost four out of their five tournament games and the fifth was on a Sunday, so he missed it and never experienced the sweet smell of victory.

After the tournament, the team started weekly practices.  (Don't get me started . . .)  This past Saturday, they had their first game.  It was like watching a completely different team.  The coach did a really great job of positioning all the boys according to their strengths.  They worked together so well.  They were unbelievable!  They absolutely crushed the other team.  I'm talking kids curled up in the fetal position weeping and other kids yelling, "I am so angry!"  It was a massacre.  It didn't diminish Harrison's joy in his team's victory, but it was hard for me to watch. 

I'm not sure I'm cut out to be a soccer mom.  Or a basketball mom.  I'm definitely not cut out to be a football mom.  I know all of this competition is good for him and will help build character.  I think it's important for him to experience the pain of losing so he can truly appreciate the joy of winning.  He gets a lot of "everyone's a winner" crap at school, not to mention the way we reward mediocrity in our society.  (Seriously, have you seen the eigth grade graduation ceremonies schools have?  When did graduating from eighth grade become an achievement?)  I don't want him to grow up feeling entitled and I want him to understand that he needs to work hard if he wants to be better at something.

So even though it can be painful to watch sometimes, I will continue to sit on the sidelines and cheer him on for the rest of his life.

4 Wisecracks:

Matthew said...

I'm with you 100% on this post Melissa. I'm not sure where the balance is, but you figure it out first and then let me know, sound good?

Matthew said...

Except that last comment is from Mindy, not Matthew. Time to switch logins...

Patti said...

Cheering the kids on, win or lose, is what mom's do best. Go Mom!

Nicole said...

I tried to read this to Brian the other night and I couldn't get the "I'm so angry!" part out without laughing too hard to be understood. Well done, you! And Harrison. He looks so old in that photo.