Saturday, September 15, 2012

Roads Not Taken Are Best Left Unknown

They're a lot of hard work, they stay dirty, and they're kind of clingy but I'll admit it- I miss my kids!  They stayed at their Aunt's house last night and I counted on really enjoying my break.  But what do I do?  I fall asleep watching Scooby Doo!  I've been trained so well by these little monkeys.  It's not even funny anymore.

Connor's first Pee-Wee game is tomorrow and I am super excited to see these little nuggets play ball.  I mean, what could be more adorable? Go ThunderCats!! But Heaven help me if someone starts pitching fits and trying to make this game no fun for my young'un.  *Rolls up sleeve* No one wants to see Mama Bear storm out of her cave ;)

But really, what is it with Psycho Parents pushing their kids to play sports at such a young age?  There's nothing wrong with wanting your kids to be involved in extracurricular activities and instilling a sense of comradery and responsibility in your children.  But switching your Kindergartener from one district to the other because the other school has a better football coach is a little nutty.

I could see wanting your child to succeed in high school so they can receive scholarships to help pay for exorbitant college tuition, but do you have to scar them in the process? I'm not only talking about emotional scarring either- I've heard of grade school-age athletes experimenting with steroids, pee-wee baseball pitchers needing elbow replacements, and horrific, nearly-crippling knee injuries.  All of which could have been avoided.  Your child shouldn't be sidelined at an early age because coaches and parents pushed them too hard.  Am I the only person who thinks this behavior is extreme?

I would never push Connor or Tempe to play a sport.  The Hubby would because he feels like he was robbed of a star football career, but that's a whole other post of Psychobabble I don't care to get into right now.  I could see me pushing them to be smart and succeed scholastically.  They can go just as far being smart as they could being athletic- maybe further. Living vicariously through your children is kind of pathetic.

I've probably mentioned this before, but I'm fairly vocal about one of my (many) pet peeves.  I don't agree with cutting after school learning activities in favor of keeping sports.  Before you get your panties in a knot, I'm not saying that sports aren't important.  I'm just arguing that schools should also strive to keep their academics, too.  Most professional sports players retire in their thirties (if they're lucky).  What do they have to fall back on?  At least you can use a degree to make a living in later years if your body and joints start to deteriorate.

I know you're probably sitting there thinking about some athletes who also went to Ivy League Law school and so on- I'm not saying exceptions to the rule don't exist.  And I congratulate them for being such a well-rounded individual.  I'd be happy if Connor or Tempe won an Olympic gold medal and then came home to perform some brain surgery. 

I hope the best for my children's futures and I plan to be there cheering them on all the way. But don't expect me to force them into activities they don't want to do just so I can feel better about paths not taken in my own life.

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