If you’d told me 20 years ago that I would spend the majority of my life transporting children from one practice to the next, I’d of laughed in your damn face. It would have been one of those boisterous belly chuckles that say, “you’re effing insane, I will NEVER be sports mom!”. And I would have been damn wrong. WRONG.
God blessed me with four sons and one hell of a daughter. She is every bit as athletic and sporty as they are. She runs fast and tries hard. She plays lacrosse which happens to be both the fall and spring season for us. The boys play baseball and football. Those to fall in the spring and fall. And sometimes summer but only if we’re really lucky.
This fall all three big kids play. Drew baseball and football. Davis the same and Devlynn’s playing in a fall lacrosse league. We’re busy. Happily busy and we go to every single game we can. We can’t wait and try not to miss.
I’d overheard some people talking about how they’d not seen some parents at the games or how they didn’t want to come to every game to teach their children they can’t be in all the places all the time. I didn’t include myself in that conversation but it made me think.
The year Davis fell in love with baseball, I’d miss almost every Saturday game for work. His team went to the playoffs and won and I narrowly made it in time to see the win. Something he remembers to this day; that big win with his favorite team. He remembers that I was there too. That I made it. And I will never, almost not make it again. Because yes, my job is important but it will never be as important as my son.
I quit doing photography like a crazy person a year or so after that. This year I’ve started accepting clients but fewer and on my time because it’s important to me that my children know they’re my priority and that while I do have to work to pay for this crazy schedule, I will do whatever it takes to get there. Because I want my kids to know I’m there for them, for whatever they need.
That doesn’t say I won’t miss a few or that I don’t feel like it’s important to teach children that you can’t do all the things all the time. They know I have to work and that their dad has to as well. They know that this week I have to go to one’s game instead of theirs. They understand because I’ve made it a priority to make them a priority. They understand because I’ve tried to teach them that we are a team, a family and we do the best we can to support each other. And while mama could definitely use some “me” time, I know there is going to be plenty of free hours when they go to college, when they move out and when they’re grown. These days are precious and I don’t think I will ever find myself regretting that I missed doing someone’s logo but I know I will regretting missing them play something they’re so passionate about or them getting their Cub Scout award. I about died when I had to miss Devlynn’s first homecoming. It is not a feeling I want to repeat.
That said, I know my stance on this isn’t for everyone. I fully believe you do what’s right for your family and I will do what’s right for mine. Without judgment. I will be the first to abundantly thank you for taking my child to practice or their game when I can’t because well, I still believe it takes a village and I am happy to build mine with you. I think we could all benefit from being kinder and more helpful with each other. It takes so little to change a person’s day or to keep a mama from losing her godforsaken mind.
I’d love to hear your thoughts on attending (or not attending) every game you can? Uplifting or damaging? What works for YOUR family?