Half the time, I'm not really sure which sport I like best, football or wrestling. Just about each afternoon from now until March is a crazy-whirlwind of homework, dinner, practices, bathes, and bed. Weekends are filled with games and tournaments. Most of the time I love that my boys are so involved in sports, but other times, I just wish we had the afternoons and weekends to just be. I think its sad that if you want your child to have any success in sports you have to get them involved at younger and younger ages.
For example, here in Iowa, wrestling capital of the country, you start your children wrestling in Pre-K. Back in North Carolina, where football is THE sport, boys are playing tackle football in full pads at the same age. Fortunately, they don't start doing that here until 3rd grade and we've put the kibosh on our youngest son beginning to wrestle until he's at least in 1st grade. And God knows that the sports around here are all about the politics and who you know. I wonder if it is like that other places too? You start cultivating the relationships with the high school coaches and other parents now, rather than later. I suppose I could refuse to participate in all of that, but my boys love their sports and as a parent, I want them to have the best opportunity possible. I'm beginning to think that maybe that's not the best idea, but what do you do? So, (I'm just going to start using the boys names on here since its easier) Greyson (the basketball player), Ian (the football player), and Noah (the wrestler) are all going full-bore. School has barely started and we've hit door running for practices that last until 8:00 p.m. Fortunately, Greyson is in junior high, so his practices are right after school. Ian and Noah's start at 5:45 p.m. Noah's ends at 7:15 and Ian's end at 8:00. By the time they have a snack, get bathes, and get into bed, its 9:30. Thank goodness they have Wednesdays and Fridays to be kids!
I have to admit that my sons' athletic abilities make me pretty dag-gone proud. And there's absolutely nothing like watching them make an awesome tackle that prevents a touchdown or catching a pass and running it 15 yards. And nothing even comes close to describing the feeling when your son is on the mat and the ref raises his hand in victory. They're proud and loving it and you're proud too. But sometimes you can't help but wonder if its an awful lot of pressure to put on kids so young. Maybe not my oldest, but the younger two, I worry about. But I guess as long as they're not being pressured to perform and they realize that all we care about is them having fun and doing their best, then we're okay. God help me if I ever become one of those parents that demand perfection from my children. And we see A LOT of those.
Not sure how I got on that subject, when I was going to brag about Ian's athletic prowess this weekend. I guess its just where my mind went. It goes to show you that I must worry about it more than I think. I suppose as a parent, you always wonder if you're doing the right thing... Am I pushing too hard? Am I not pushing enough? Are they too involved? Are they not involved enough? One of the hardest jobs ever is being a parent, hands down. And it's the one job where you can't afford to fail. The Lord knows, I love my kids and I want what's best for them. And as long as they're happy doing what they do, then I'm okay with it. Even if I do worry that a lot of the time our focus is too much on sports. Or maybe that's just because we have so many boys??? Who knows.
Anyway, before I go work on some more sanding (trying to get all 6 pieces sanded, so I can prime them all at once), I thought I'd share some pics of Ian this weekend. He had two really awesome scrimmages: 10 tackles, 1 completed pass that he ran 15 yards, and he almost had an interception - a dive and it bounced off his fingertips.
Ian is in the middle.
Encouraging the team from his position of Free Safety.
Making his 3rd tackle in the 1st scrimmage.
I believe he is exchanging some words with the opposing team. LOL
Breaking out of the huddle.
With his cousin, Brandon.
I thought it was pretty cool that they both are #10.
The boys are only 4 months apart in age and talk about competitive! Their first game was against each other's teams. Whoo-Boy!
And just for the heck of it, here's a couple of videos from wrestling season, last winter/spring:
The video I made last year for our wrestling club and posted to YouTube:
Really, there's nothing like it. And as long as the boys are happy, then I'm happy. And that's what its all about, right?