Believe or it not, while it may be just the beginning of February tomorrow is the beginning of soccer sign-ups. Why do I mention this?
Little Miss just informed us that she didn't want to play soccer this summer while we were discussing getting her signed up. This wasn't a total shock because she (and her brother) are very much like their dad in that they are home bodies. Once they get home from school they really enjoy just being at home.
I get that but I also know how necessary outside activity is for them and I truly believe in the importance of team sports.
With more frequency than I like, Little Miss tells us that she just wants to stay home and not go to activities such as kung fu, swimming lessons or soccer.
Lest you think that we are running all over the place, with activities every evening, we try to keep it to one activity at at time. There are the occasional overlaps but on the whole we try our best not to be too busy.
The frustrating thing is that once she gets there, she seems to have a great time. In fact, she LOVED soccer last summer even though she said she didn't want to go more often than not. She is hilariously competitive (just like her dad . . . and her mom) and she thrives on trying to be the fastest, the strongest or even getting the most goals.
So we are faced with a decision. Do we sign her up against her wishes and hope that once again she ends up loving it? Or do we take this summer off and revisit the idea of soccer next summer?
I admit that the money savings of not playing soccer is attractive but I truly feel she benefits so much from it that I am more than willing to just suck up the cost.
When does it make sense to not respect their wishes? When does it become forcing our interests on the kids? When do I stop second guessing every stinking decision?
Team sports were an important part of my childhood, I continued to play soccer into my adulthood when a horrible knee injury ended all of that, and I believe that they help in learning how to work well with others, how to accept defeat graciously and how to win even more graciously. I also realize that they are not for everyone.
One of my jobs as a parent is to set a good example, to raise happy and healthy kids. Part of this is to ensure that they eat well and that they are challenged physically so that they remain fit and healthy. Obviously soccer and kung fu help to ensure that . . . along with my moving us towards a more clean way of eating.
I suspect that we will decide to sign them up and then deal with dragging them each week. Hopefully we will be rewarded by kids who figure out that they love it but that is not a guarantee.
Have you been faced with this situation? What did you decide?