It’s a Saturday in March and we are getting ready to drive 3 hours to MD to watch my son’s lacrosse team play. Mind you, our son D isn’t playing… he’s got an Avulsion Fracture on his ankle and is on “complete rest” for 5 days before he can even start rehab. It’s just “what we do” when our kids’ teams are playing and we have any possible opportunity to watch and attend the game. Is this craziness or just parenting?
We’ve always been this way. If our boys were on a sports team, we were in the stands (or tramping out onto the opposite sideline) to support their efforts. It’s never really been an issue of whether or not our son gets his moment on the field… it’d be nice to see him play, but that’s really not my focus. The primary reason for being there is to show our support in the most tangible way… we’re THERE.
No matter the level of sport played, there’s always a component of dedication that must be present in the player. Youth leagues, High School, Travel programs, College… they all require participation on the part of each student-athlete. In my humble opinion (IMHO), I believe the part we play as parents is simply to be present at any venue in which our kids participate. It’s not an issue of how many minutes they play…. it’s not whether they’re even physically able to be on the field. It’s the idea that our kids have made this choice… this commitment… to get up each day, get out on that field, and be a part of a team so we need to support them.
My younger son has had many more years of parental participation with regards to his sporting choices, simply because D came to lacrosse much later in his HS career. M and I were on athletic boards, M has done websites for most, I have volunteered to be the team mom or “Athletic Director”, depending on the needs of each program in which our boys belonged. I am still the Athletic Director (scheduler) for Richmond Shock Lacrosse, simply because I’ve been doing the job for the past 5 years and just can’t seem to (want to) hand it off. Sports can be a business, but they can also be a saving grace that allow parents to do the “behind the scenes” work and still remain supportive of their childrens’ efforts.
We may gripe and whine about all the travel we have done, and have yet to do, but I would never trade it for an extra hour of sleep. I know this hectic chaos has a lifespan and will all-too-soon become a memory. Being on the sidelines of our boys games is a privilege. It’s a gift to be able to see our boys do something they love, even if they don’t ever make it to the field on any given day. Seeing D on the sidelines, bolstering his friends and helping to coach them in their efforts, is worth the lack of sleep. He’s going to graduate in a few short weeks and this too will be part of his past. I just can’t imagine being anywhere else but AT THE GAME.
I’ll sleep in next week… for now, it’s off to the lacrosse game of the moment! Go Hood Blazers… we believe in you and WE SUPPORT YOU!