A Hard Decision
She decided to not try out for her Club Soccer Team this May. This may seem like a trivial decision, I mean, it's not like she was choosing a college, but for her this was a big deal. If you know my daughter, you would know that she is extremely loyal, a hard worker and loves her social connections. She gives her all to whatever it is she does.
Kat began playing soccer when she was 4 1/2 (the allowed age to start back then) and hasn't stopped. She went from Rec to Select to Premier, as well as playing on our town's Varsity High School team. She loves soccer, but it's not her life. As parents, we have never forced our girls to do anything. We've encouraged, maybe pushed them to take risks and if we knew their resistance was just based out of fear or getting out of their comfort zones, we may not have given them a choice, they had to at least try. But we have never lived our missed out opportunities through our girls. Just because I did something, doesn't mean they have to. They don't have to play every sport, go to every camp like I see other kids doing.
If your kids play club sports then you know the expenses that are involved as well as the busy schedules and travel. Summers are filled with tournaments, many requiring hotel stays. Kat would do summer tournaments, fall season, winter indoor or futsal, then a 2 month break, if even that, before starting spring season and then tryouts and the cycle repeats. Because of expenses and because both girls are now playing Club (thankfully they have the same coaches, just different teams), they have actually helped pay for quite a bit of their fees.
So, over the last year Kat has not gotten as much playing time, averaging 5-10 minutes in an 80+ minute game. Now, we know all about the "no one is guaranteed playing time", but this was a big drop and going in for just a few minutes isn't much time to get in a groove of how that particular game is going, etc.. She was also missing out on spending time with friends, and we were missing quite a bit of church activities because we were gone so much. We had talked with Kat about possibly not trying out again, but totally leaving the decision in her court, and not pressuring her one way or another. We truly love watching her play, but know that she also loves pursuing other things, and maybe now was a good time.
It took her some time, but she finally decided that she wouldn't try out again. She talked to one coach and sent a super great e-mail to the other (because she wasn't going to get to see him before their last game). We were so proud of her e-mail and the way she talked to her coach. She was thankful to them for all they've done, but was also honest with her reason for not trying out again, but it was done respectfully. Hubby sent a few notes out to the coaches thanking them and they sent wonderful responses back (which always makes you feel great when they say amazing things about your children). Thankfully Kat will get to see her coaches since they also coach Nan, and they told her she was welcome to come and practice with the old team and I'm sure we'll be going to watch some games. She will still play HS ball, but I think she's looking forward to being around church and her friends more.
I'm proud of the decision she made. I would've been just as proud had she decided to try out again, but I know this was hard for her and she did a wonderful job! Way to go Kat!
She's playing HS golf now and she's loving it. I'm so glad!
Sometimes as parents, we tend to make all the decisions for our children, when in all reality it is good to give them the skills to make decisions and choices for themselves. Our need to do it all is usually based out of a fear that they will not make the right decision. Not always easy, but so good to do...letting them make choices and decisions!
With Joy UNquenchable,