Welcome To Our Little Big House On The Prairie

Monday, November 7, 2011

Living the Life of a Wrestler's Mom

First of all, I just want to thank each and every person that left such kind comments yesterday about my blog post.  Each one touched my heart.  :)  We had a wonderful day, Landon enjoyed his new Innotab (which eats batteries like no tomorrow), and we got a good laugh when he ran away while we sang Happy Birthday.  I have yet to figure out why he doesn't like it when we all sing to him.  LOL!  We did manage to coax him back to the table, where he blew out all his candles at once - with a little help from his big brother and sister.  :)

I didn't get any crafting accomplished this weekend and from now until March, that's going to pretty much be the norm.  You see, we're entering into wrestling season.  Time for tournaments!   WOO-HOO!

Here is a different side of myself that I've decided to introduce to you...  One of a fiercely competitive, insanely supportive, 100% mat mom.  That's what the mothers of wrestlers are called.  :)  And I personify it to a T.  My boys love it and so do I.

This is their serious "wrestling face".  No smiles.  Ever.  LOL!

Even Landon gets in on the action:

Show me your stance, Landon!

Although we won't put him into practice on a competitive level until he's 6.

For those of you who don't know a lot about the sport of Folkstyle Wrestling, there is nothing like it in the world.  For three years, I wrinkled my nose up at my brother-in-law as he tried to talk us into getting the boys into the sport - Wrestling parents are weird, don'tcha know.

Two years ago, Ian decided he wanted to go out (My brother-in-law got a hold of him) and badgered me to death until I said okay.  I approached sign-ups with trepidation and hoped he'd try it out for the one year and move on to a more civilized sport...  Like basketball.  Noah, who was in 1st grade at the time, didn't want to be left out since his older brothers were becoming more involved in various sports activities, so he was signed up as well.

I mean, what's the point of two sweaty guys rolling around on a mat in a bathing suit???  How do you keep score?  Ride time? Takedowns?  Shots?  Single-legs?  Double legs? Kill the head? Drive him? Break the arm? (You're going to break someone's arm????)  It was like another language.  One, I can assure you, I speak fluently now.

Now fast forwarding two years later, with one Super Pee Wee State Runner-Up, two District Runners-Up, two State Qualifiers, and a trip to the AAU Kids' State Wrestling Championships under my belt, I am 100% Mat Mom.

You know...  the crazy moms you see on youtube that look like this:

Yep.  That's Scott and me with two of the wrestling coaches mat-side during one of Ian's matches last year at the Columbus Sailors' Black Friday Tournament.  No Black Friday shopping for this mat mom.  We're gonna go wrestling!

I literally have thousands of pictures of Ian and Noah in action.

Ian's fastest pin:  0:18

Some people think that wrestling is barbaric, especially when children are young.  I even had one of my good friends tell me it was a "cult" and I should hear how I sound to others when I'm talking about tournaments, matches, competitors, and my sons' weight. (We do NOT cut weight.)  However, we do what every other parent does when they're child is in a serious competitive sport:  We eat healthy.  We have good bedtimes.  We pump them up mentally.  And there is nothing wrong with that.

Wrestling teaches so much that many other sports do not.  Mental preparation and self-confidence is key.  You can't blame your failures on anyone else - "My line wasn't blocking", "It was a bad pass", "If he hadn't..."  Wins and losses rest on your shoulders alone.  My sons learn to respect their opponents and the ref, and most importantly, themselves.  What other sport makes their athletes shake the hands of their coaches at the end of each practice?  And although wrestling is a singular sport, the team concept is one where they encourage and support each other before, during, and after matches.  My sons head for their friends after a hard loss, not to Scott and me.  And if they have to compete against a friend?  Well, gloves off during the match and the friendship and respect still endures.  They gain not only a physical strength by conditioning, but also a mental strength with a drive and work ethic that will stay with them the rest of their lives.

We have formed bonds with other wrestling parents that I just don't think you see in other competitive sports.  If others think its a "cult" because of this, well, so be it - even though I still love and respect the person that told me that.  :)  These people are our family.  We celebrate their victories and we mourn their losses.  We are a tight-knit group that cares, supports, and looks after each other and our children.  And I can't imagine my life without them in it.

This is why we wrestle and that is why we love it.

So, from now until March its focus, determination, and a drive to win.  We may not have as good of a season this year as we did last year, but we look forward to it nonetheless.  And you know...  There's always next year.  ;)

Noah in action:

2010 AAU Super Pee State Placewinner 52 lb K-1 Division
2011 Season Record:  63-11
2011 AAU Super Pee State State Runner-Up 58lb 2nd Grade Division
2011 AAU Northeastern District Runner-Up 60 lb 3/4 Grade Division
2011 State Qualifier as a 2nd Grader - 60 lb 3/4 Grade Division

Districts and State are usually reserved for 3rd-8th grade only, but 2nd graders can attempt to qualify.

Ian In Action:

2011 Season Record:  56-13
2011 AAU Northeaster District Runner-Up 75lb 3/4 Grade Division
2011 State Qualifier 75lb 3/4 Grade Division

It won't let me post Ian's video due to copyright violation of the music I used (eyeroll), but here's one of our wrestling club that I made last year at the end of the season.  Look for Ian in it - and Noah, as well.

We're pretty hard core.  :)