These have been my Sundays during November.
Standing in cold, muddy, biting winds to watch both my kids play rugby.
Our mornings are filled with “where’s my water bottle?”. “Mum, I can’t find my gum shield”. “Did anyone see my other boot?” as we all race around the house to be out in time.
Sport pretty much takes over our Sundays, but the benefits far outweigh the cons.
Every Sunday they spend two hours expending lots of energy. They listen to coaches who teach them discipline, respect – both for each other and for the opposition – sportsmanship, how to win and how to lose, how to listen, how to better themselves and how to support their team mates.
This week our grassroots squad faced their Goliath. A big name, local team with numerous players to call on and the might of near professional coaches behind them.
The players were huge; a wall of lads who looked two school years older than our boys.
They strode on the pitch at our home ground with the confidence of numerous wins behind them; other clubs trampled under their perfectly coached boots.
And yes they won the first game. Not easily, they had to work hard, but they won.
But the second game was a different matter. This time they didn’t win. They drew and as our boys walked off the pitch we parents cheered for their bravery, their grit and determination and for digging their heels in and playing hard.
I never ‘got’ sporty parents before. I can’t abide the yelling, the criticism, the taunting I’ve seen. The supremely pushy parents telling their kids they’re the best, never encouraging team play when they were on a squad of others.
But this feels good. The supportive parents yelling encouragement for other kids – even the opposition. The dads patting their sons on the back and telling them how proud they are of their efforts, even in defeat. The warm feeling that flows up from the pit of your stomach when your player walks off that pitch utterly worn out, but with the most beautiful smile on his muddy face.
November has been a month of all this. Bring on December!
I’m also linking this post up to Jane at Diary of a Desperate Exmoor Woman who wrote the post: Back off, pushy sport parents on this very subject.
This post is for week 166 of The Photo Gallery: November.
If you’re new and want to know what The Gallery is, go and read here, and then come right back and join in!
You can also pick up The Gallery code if you want too, though it’s not a requirement.
And you could also subscribe to this blog to make sure you never miss a theme; they are posted here every Friday.
Now go forth and show some big blog love. Visit other bloggers, comment on their post if you feel moved to do so, and be inspired.
This virtual gallery of photographs is about enjoying each other’s work, so go make someone’s day. You will get out of this whatever you put in.
The link stays open until Tuesday so you have plenty of time to join in.
And absolutely ANYONE can join in.