March Dadness Revisited

The spring soccer season just ended for my daughter, so I went back and re-read my March Dadness post. Here are a few things I learned about  kids, coaching soccer, and my daughter.

1. Kids are resilient – I anticipated tears this season. It wouldn’t have shocked me if my daughter cried on my shoulder about losing or not playing. After all, this was her first time in team sports and she is having to learn how to function in a new environment. Could she handle losing (we certainly did) and sitting down (she certainly did)? The answer is yes.  Not one tear. Zero. She was happy to play, she was happy to take a breather and enjoyed the experience. Turns out the whole team was like that. The worries of March were but wasted time.

2. Kids  listen and get better with practice – Did you know I speak Navajo? It’s true (no, it’s not) because that is the only explanation for why our team just threw the ball to the other team after being asked not to. As the season went on with practice and games, however,  the girls started to do things differently. They got better at throw ins, passing, setting up to defend corner kicks, and figured out that kicking the ball to the other team is not always best. I guess they knew Navajo all along.

3. Coaching is hard, but fun – The second game of the year, the real coach couldn’t be there, so I was asked (along with another dad) fill in. I played soccer 25 years ago, but was not what you would call a “student of the game” or “coaching material”. Turns out, I could do it. As the year went on, I continued to help coach. I found myself wanting to do it. The hard part was when they looked at me in between quarters for what to do next after being down a few goals.  The fun part was seeing them continue to play, get better and enjoy the game.

4. Expect Something Special –  After the first game of the year it was my belief that my daughter wouldn’t score a goal. She was a little lost, unsure about how to react, and not as fast as her team mates. I didn’t think she enjoyed it enough to stay with it. In the final game of the year, a team-mate passed the ball to my daughter and she took a shot. GOAL!  Her mom and grandparents were sitting right behind the goal and cheered loudly. It was perfect! She traded hugs with her team and they were happy for her – she just lit up (me too).

In the end, my daughter ran harder, was in better position and was more confident. She decided to play in the fall even before she scored the goal (that was the cherry on top). I have to remember she’s just a little girl, but is getting older and her confidence is growing. Even though she didn’t need my shoulder to cry on in this season, she knows it will always be there for her.

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Three Moms I Know – Happy Mothers Day!

Mothers…we all have one. Some were good and some were not. For me, I was blessed with a wonderful mom. But there were others along the way who also cared for me.  So here are few words about “three moms” I know and am better for it.

My Mom

I have always admired her sense of adventure, even though she masked it well. On the surface, she appears to be the collected, practical mom – but I don’t feel that is the case. She loves to travel, was a PC and internet early adopter, and a pretty good artist (can stand on her head, too). Now, she is a master gardener. Her water colors my be packed away, but her artistic touch can be seen in the gardens she grows – specifically daylilies.  When I’m at her home I marvel at what she planted – it really is beautiful. Love you mom.

 

Composite Mom

My friends moms occupy a special place in my heart.  They car pooled on field trips, threw birthday parties, took us to the movies, the pool and practices.  They hosted, fed, fussed and cared for me, even though I wasn’t their son. So thank you in no particular order to Mrs. Wiedmer, Mrs. Johnson, Mrs. Horn, and  Mrs. McPherson. Without these ladies, things could have turned out differently. Love you moms.

My Wife

She blogs, cooks, cleans, plans, shops, teaches and manages our home. Kelly, like so many mothers, does the repetitive work of parenting very well. And just when she is about to pull her hair out, in come the kids to snuggle up with her – and it makes her day! The love they return to her just makes her beam. So Kelly, thank you for being a tremendous mother – it shows in all you do. Love you.