What does your family sacrifice so your kids can play sports? I never imagined I would be a soccer mom. Or a softball or basketball mom for that matter. And yet I am. And my small people are still small. As in 5 and 7.
My older child, my 2nd grade daughter, plays soccer, softball and basketball and my five year old son plays soccer (his 3rd year) and baseball. And he's asking for flag football in the Fall.
Too much, too soon? Maybe. Do I spend a lot of time in the car, on the sidelines, washing uniforms and wishing we had EVERY night for family dinners? Yes. Do I worry about overscheduling them which could trickle down into stress? Absolutely. Katherine Stone wrote a wonderful article about this. Do we run from one event to another? Do we lose sleep for early games and late practices? Do I sometimes worry that they need time to just 'relax'? Sure.
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We sacrifice time. We definitely invest financially. I worry they are tired. I don't want them to burn out.
And I was not an athlete as a child. That gift comes from my husband's side of the family.
So, why am I ok with this? Trust me when I say I've spent hours worrying about it (as I do many aspects of parenting).
But, there are a reasons. I explain….
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So for us ... my childen's growth and happiness is a priority.
THEY LOVE to be active. They are happier and healthier when they have the opportunity to play sports they love. In my mind, trying new things, new sports and other activities is a gift - they are learning their strengths and weaknesses as well as how to work as a team with different groups of children. My daughter's decision to play basketball was one I supported 100% as it was the VERY FIRST time she was willing to do something - ANYTHING - without a group of people she already knew. THAT is self confidence. That alone is worth every minute of lost sleep, every minute I spend in the car and every ounce of stress I experience trying to juggle a hectic schedule.
- By Danielle Smith
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