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Your Complete Guide To Parenting Screw-Ups: Sports Edition

Your Complete Guide To Parenting Screw-Ups: Sports Edition by Robyn Welling @RobynHTV

Last week I went and completely lost my mind.

See, I have a confession to make - none of my kids participate in team sports. I KNOW, I'm stifling their team-building skills and their innate childlike love of motion and their ability to obtain lucrative college athletic scholarships someday.

But when it came down to it, my kids would always rather just stay at home and chill after school and on the weekends, and because ME TOO, I've never pushed the issue.

However, a flier recently came home from school about volleyball. Normally, I would cram this gently into the recycling bin next to the cheerleading tryout form and the soccer signup sheet, but something made me set this one aside. I tentatively asked my 9-year-old daughter, "Was volleyball something you wanted to try?"

I watched her reaction carefully; she tends to assign the same amount of immediate, explosive enthusiasm to the prospect of selecting a treat from the dentist's treasure box as she would to, say, a Disney vacation, but I've learned over the years how to carefully discern the likelihood that she'll still be enthusiastic after I've paid the admission fee/dental copay.

But volleyball was, in fact, something she wanted to try, so off to the sign-up clinic we went.

By the way, when your child shows interest in a sport, here's something you should know: the sport itself is only 0.0000000001% of what they're actually interested in.
Top 10 Reasons Kids Are Excited About Playing Sports by Robyn Welling @RobynHTV

Reasons Your Kid Is ACTUALLY Excited About Playing Sports:

  1. Fancy knee socks/sparkly leotard
  2. Anticipation over what color the team jersey will be
  3. Snacks
  4. Permission to kick and hit things
  5. Practice = guaranteed playdate with their friends
  6. New shoes
  7. Did I mention snacks?
  8. No need to yell, "LOOK AT ME!" - everyone's already looking
  9. Casually mentioning new Special Activity in front of siblings every two minutes
  10. Maybe we'll get pizza after the game

But anyway, signing her up for volleyball isn't the reason I say I've lost my mind. The moment I actually went certifiably insane was when I VOLUNTEERED TO COACH THE TEAM.

I have never played a team sport in any kind of organized fashion, unless you count 4,000 afternoons of Red Rover during the summers of my youth, let alone coached a team sport. Aside from gym class, my experience with volleyball consists of a few couples' games I played in my mid-twenties; as I recall, I did not contribute significantly to any points that may have been scored on my side of the net.

In a show of solidarity and proof that crazy might be contagious, equally intoxicated by the scent of rubber safety mats and the prospect of Empowering Girls With Awesome Sportiness, my husband decided to coach, too. So, what I'm saying is, either this will be the most epically amazing family bonding experience of all time, or none of us will survive the first practice.

We'll see.

In the meantime, I wrote this handy decision tree to help you determine if coaching your kid's team is right for you - I hope it helps!

Good luck, and see you on the field! Court? Mats? I don't even know. We're screwed.

Decision Tree: should you coach your kid's team? By Robyn Welling @RobynHTV #funny

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