Sunday, January 29, 2012

Basketball and Preschool

Jarod and I played basketball growing up so it holds a soft-spot in our hearts. I'll admit that I've dreamt of having kids and watching them play the sport throughout their childhoods. I've experienced first-hand how difficult playing a sport I loved so much was when it became combined with such high expectations. Basketball wasn't just a game for me; it became much more and somewhere down the line, my love, my desire for it waned. Thus, I promised myself that I would never place that much emphasis on such trivial things in the lives of my children. Grades better be damn great and their growth as a decent human-being should be bar-none but how many points they can score in game will be the least of my worries.

I love him so much even though . . . (read on)

We've signed Aiden up for three activities so far, swim, soccer and basketball. There is absolute no give with me about swim lessons. I don't care how fast his backstroke will be but I want my kids to know how to swim, how to take care of themselves if ever placed in the situation where they must swim to save themselves. You see, I get a bit panicky when the walls of the deep-end seem a tad too far. I can pass as someone who is able to swim by the unsuspecting eye but I'm pretty terrible at it.

However, signing Aiden for soccer and yes, even basketball are our attempts to get him acquainted with the world, to meet and learn how to interact with different people and also, to encourage physical fitness in his life at an early age.

Today was his first basketball game and it's safe to say that he did not play a single second of the game. He even refused to sit by his team. His favorite part of the whole episode was the water break. We begged, pleaded and even bribed the kid with ice cream if he would just play for a little bit to see if he liked it. He adamantly refused. I felt the stares of the other parents, mostly with sympathy and a few with judgements. None of which didn't really bother me as much as having absolutely not a clue how to respond to him or the situation.

"Do you want ice cream!?"

One thing Jarod pointed out was that Aiden could be scared of his coach. Although, the guy is wonderful, super nice and very encouraging; he's much louder and boisterous than Aiden's accustomed to. Jarod and I are soft-spoken and Aiden only hears a raised voice when he's in trouble.

Aiden's coach and daddy trying to convince him to play.

However, that doesn't excuse his downright neglect to listen to authority. He's very good about listening to Jarod and I on an everyday, regular basis but at basketball, he'll even refuse to just sit down on a black line with his teammates.

Ugghhh, WTF.

Trissy, Aiden's fan #1.

Ali, Aiden's fan #2.

The game ended and the coach remarked that it's fine and he will play one of these days. He has children of his own, has a daughter that refused to walk until 22 months and thus, he had the patience and wisdom to know that time will come and his resistance will wane. Yet, when we got home, I tried to fight the tears of disappoint sliding down my face. I was not disappointed that Aiden would not be a basketball prodigy, far from it. I was disappointed in the way I was parenting him.

I was the mother of "that kid" that refused to listen and I realized that I was failing him by not giving him a more structured daily-life. If Aiden wants to sleep in until 10AM, then he does and I acclimate our day for him. If Aiden doesn't want to color, read or sit down and count with me, then we stop. I have the "luxury" to stop when he is no longer interested. Since I'm busy with the younger kids and their needs more often, Aiden is, also, left to play on his own quite often doing what he wants to do, whenever he wants to do it. In retrospect, his life is very self-absorbed as he doesn't have to take into account the needs and wants of others. He's the oldest and his younger siblings don't care enough to fight for their own preferences.

My tears came crashing down and Jarod comforted me, remarking that Aiden is a good kid that was kind and polite to others but the truth is, is that we don't have the time and the ability to give him what he needs. He went on to say that Aiden needs more structure and it would good for him to separate from me and interact with other kids his age, be forced to do things that don't necessarily suit his personal preference at the time-being as well as learn the basis of the future of his education.

I knew the truth of the words his spoke and that afternoon, I saw the necessity of his words.

We weren't planning on putting him in preschool until September but I think we should do it as soon as possible. Granted, I won't lie when I say that the "break" will be amazing. Aiden hasn't napped for months; I honestly can't even remember the last time. Thus, when Ali and Tristen take their afternoon nap and Aiden is in preschool, I can finally have some peace of mind during the day and a nice break from all the parental duties for just a little bit.

I love all three of them very much but a break from them sounds so nice.

This new revelation and change in Aiden's life will take us a step-back from our "getting out of debt" journey but it is what it is. We feel this is a necessity and healthy step in the growth of Aiden as a person. And money, well, will never be as important as that.

If you have a moment, I'd appreciate if you could click the link below! :) Thank you!! <3

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