As many people in my personal and professional circle know, I am extremely passionate about sports. I have had the opportunity to coach girls’ basketball the last three years (and better yet with my husband, Craig). And outside of my blood family, these girls and their families are my other family.
Many families have their quality time at home watching movies or going on vacations. We have our family time on the court, on the field, in the stands or in the car driving to practices, games and weekend ‘get-aways, AKA tournaments’. Our kids don’t understand (yet) why we don’t plan family trips over spring break like their friends. They soon will.
I write this because it is the change of seasons…winter to spring, dark to light, and in our worlds…basketball to baseball and soccer. As great as the change of season is, there is always something missing when we don’t have practice plans to put together (ok, ok…I didn’t do them, but I was the voice of reason when he was planning!), emails to send, but most importantly, the ‘team’ who we have spent so much time with over the last 3 years.
I feel every child (and adult for that matter, no matter how old you are!) should be involved in working as a team to achieve a goal. In my personal experience, our society sees competition as a negative thing and has transitioned into ‘every child deserves a ribbon’. Every child should not be created equal. Does every child have a right to play? Absolutely. It is important to give leadership to those wanting and deserving of it. It is important to acknowledge those kids who go above and beyond…the ones you see in your neighborhood shooting baskets in the driveway, striking the soccer ball into the net, playing soft toss in the grass, carrying a ball and glove on their bike to play with friends. It’s those kids, who work hard whether their coach or mom/dad are watching our not that will be leading our community. These are the kids who not only will be a role model and make an impact in sports, but will likely do the same in life. Those who went above and beyond without needing to be told are the same ones to give without expecting to receive. They pay it forward every day because that is what makes them happy. To be able to play sports, there are many sacrifices. To be great in sports AND LIFE, there are even more but all worth it.
I really love this quote from John Wooden: What you are as a person is far more important than what you are as a basketball player.
For those not involved in team sports (or maybe you weren’t involved as a child), it’s never too late. No matter how old, you will learn more about you so that you can share and teach others along your path. For those families chasing their kids everywhere, this too shall pass. Enjoy every minute. Be present. Have fun. And meal plan. 🙂
See, sports isn’t about getting into shape (well, it helps!), but it’s about playing what you love and playing it with whom you love. Many lessons in life I’ve learned from my coaches, my teammates, my parents and now I’m learning from the ones who I coach.
The below pic is from our second tournament this year where we were champions. The medal was just the tip of the iceberg…what is really important is how they came together as a team, not individuals, to achieve a goal. Sending love to all of you girls…I miss you!
See you on the court (or field),