For Kicks

I have never been into sports. Well, at least not participating in sports. I was an avid Braves fan back in the day, and I used to follow volleyball a LOT, but as far as participating? Nah. I was very awkward. I hated P.E. in school because I was so inept. I remember once we were playing baseball, and I was in the outfield, and the ball came to me, so I scooped up and threw it in to infield. Except, I released the ball a little early, and it ended up rolling along the ground. The girl on second base, who was a very athletic person and was involved in a lot of sports, stared at me in disbelief, and said out loud, “I can’t believe she *ROLLED* the ball.” Gosh, I was so embarrassed! I began to root my toes into the dirt, wishing I could make a hole big enough to fall into. Ugh!

And there was the time we had volleyball. I just could not get the overhand serve down. The ball would always land short of the net. So one of the teachers that was walking around told me to serve underhand. I did, and woosh! I got an ace! Yippee! The teacher smiled and nodded, and walked over to the next team, and I continued to serve underhand, and kept getting aces! All this, of course, made the other team mad, so when the other teacher came by (one of the teachers was the boys’ P.E. teacher, the other was the girls’, and since we were playing co-ed volleyball, they were both roaming around to the different teams on the court), they told her I was serving underhand. So she told me, no, you need to serve overhand. So of course, I do, and it goes short of the net again. Then this teacher walks away, and we’re playing again, and soon it’s my turn to serve again. So I start to take the overhand stance, when the first teacher came around again and was like, no, serve underhand. So I did, and got an ace 😀 and he walks away, and the other team complains to the second teacher, and I’m told I need to serve overhand again. Sheesh! Anyway, I never did like P.E.

I have no strength whatsoever. You don’t use very many muscles to lift the book you’re reading, which is what I did a lot. I hated those strength tests in elementary. I always got 0 seconds. I couldn’t even hold myself up for a measly second! My teacher even made allowances for me by letting me hold the other way, but I still couldn’t. I would long for P.E. to be over so that we could go back to academics. I hated when they replaced May Day with Field Day in 5th grade. UGH. It was especially bad for me because 5th grade always did the May Pole dance, and since Kindergarten, I’ve always been amazed at the beautiful patterns they made on the May Pole just by holding a ribbon and going in and out of each other! I couldn’t wait until I was in 5th grade and would learn how to do that dance! And then the darn school decided that we’ll have May Day every other year, with Field Day in the in between years, and the first Field Day was when I was in 5th grade! grrrrrrrrrrr. I prayed and prayed for rain that day, and luckily, it drizzled enough that we had to postpone Field Day, then I think I was sick for the make-up day 😉 I guess I know I’m not good, and I hate letting down the teammates. When they see they’re partnered with you, they have such a look on their face that it kinda makes you feel like, well, I’ll show them! And then you don’t, and just end up feeling embarrassed.

Now that I’m “grown-up” and have a child, I see my boy now entering that scary field of sports. He’d much rather stay home and read, but I think I forgot all my hate of P.E. when I signed up my son for sports. I had wanted him to be more active, and learn about competitiveness and sportsmanship and getting along with others in a sportslike atmosphere. I knew since I was small that if I had a boy, I would sign him up for baseball. It’s all my boy cousins did growing up, all the way to college. It’s what my nephew is currently doing. So my son was going to be next. I also signed him up for soccer, since my niece is really into that, and I thought it would be fun for him. Boy, was I wrong!

My son says he enjoys soccer, but he really is SO not into the game. He’s running around with the team, but it’s obviously other things are in his head. He’s not even looking at the ball, he’s just following where the mass of people are. Balls have gone past him several times, and because he wasn’t looking down, like everyone else is, he missed them. I’d get so angry at him! “Pay attention!” I’d yell at him.

Baseball was the same way. Luckily, you don’t have to be constantly “on” when you’re playing baseball, so he tended to do better, but still, even swinging the bat is just so awkward for him. *sigh* Poor thing inherited my awkwardness in sports, and nothing from his athletic father.

I couldn’t understand why he wasn’t into the game. What was so hard about it? It wasn’t until last week that I remembered my own experiences. He’s just like me. He’d rather read or draw or write. He may be tall and lean, and have a good body-type for sports (people are always telling me, wooo, future football/basketball player, huh?), but that’s not his interest or his strength. It especially came to head when at our very last practice of the season, the coach decided to do a boys vs. the parents game. I was running around that soccer field thinking what the heck am I doing?!?! And I began to feel sad that I had forced my son to do these things when it was obvious he just wasn’t into it.

So today is his very last soccer game. I mean, if he gets the interest later on, of course, I’ll sign him up again. But right now? He’s more into dinosaurs and reading geography books. Maybe when the summer rolls around again, we’ll go for baseball, since it’s a short season and really, just for “fun” (they’re actually all supposed to be “just for fun,” but there’s something about summer that makes it seem lighter? or something?). We’ll get his trophy today and put it on the shelf beside his other soccer trophy and his baseball trophy, and that may be it for a while! But I’m okay with that. Just makes more room for all the writing awards he’s gonna get! 😉


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