Last spring I had each of the twins of a different baseball team. We had practice four nights a week, two of them near our house for an hour and two completely across town for an hour and a half (sometimes more). Then when games started it went to one practice and four games a week. We ate dinner and did homework in the car almost every night. And we were all completely miserable. And I vowed never, ever again.
And, actually, they haven’t played a team sport since then.
At first I felt like a bad parent. I felt like the twins were somehow missing out because they weren’t playing on some sports team. All their friends were doing it. I must be a bad parent not giving my kids the same opportunities as their friends. And then I realized how much happier we all are. Sports was something I pushed them to do, because they’re boys. And boys are supposed to play sports. But maybe my boys aren’t athletic. And maybe I should stop trying to make them be something that they just aren’t. And then last night the oldest one got out a couple balls and asked if I would go outside and play catch with him. Something I could NEVER get him to do when he was actually on a team. And I did. And we had so much fun and were laughing so much that his brother came out to see what we were doing and asked to join in. And so we took turns batting and pitching and playing outfield in our backyard. And we ran and laughed and enjoyed the beautiful weather and just had fun playing. And isn’t that the whole reason I signed them up to play sports in the first place? Because I wanted them to have fun? I want them to love being active.
And maybe playing together as a family is really the best team of all.