…those hard to please sports parents. This spring the dutchkid is playing soccer. We decided to try out a team here at our YMCA, and one of her friends is playing on the team as well. This is our first foray into organized sports of any kind.
Now I love the Y, and I like the idea of how this is supposed to work… but we got a total dud for a coach. The coaches are volunteers, so I understand that life is busy but I don’t know what this guy’s problem is. He hasn’t shown up for practices twice and didn’t bother to call anyone (he has all of the parents’ phone numbers). Even when he does show up, he doesn’t have any sort of structured activity for the kids to do. So unless a parent intervenes, the kids just run around the gym willy-nilly for an hour.
He has shown up to the games, but he doesn’t actually coach or give the kids any direction. I mean, they’re all 3 and 4, they don’t even really remember which direction they’re supposed to be going! At first I thought that maybe he just didn’t know what to do exactly, but now that we’ve seen other coaches in action you would think he would pick up on what right looks like. Last week he wasn’t even paying enough attention to help the kids get into a line to do the whole, “Game’s over! Give everyone five”…a dad went out and helped them. The only things I can think of is that he agreed to coach is because a) his wife made him or b) his kid got to play for free if he coached.
I’m debating now on what to do. I know that the Y is aware he hasn’t shown up, we talked to a staff member about that last week. If this were free, I would just bite my tongue and better luck next time. But I’m paying for this privilege, and it wasn’t overly cheap! We are over halfway through so I’m not going to pull her out now (and she would be heartbroken). You can be certain I will be checking to see who exactly the coach is before I register for anything else.
Mostly I can’t decide how this would be resolved to my satisfaction other than venting (and actually, I’m feeling much better now that I wrote it out). Should I just write a letter?
What would you do?
Published April 28, 2010
Tags: blondes, body image, brunettes
You know, I’ve never believed that whole schtick about blondes. I’ve always had a bent for being just a little bit different, so I never really envied the blond hair that was very common where I’m from. And back when it seemed like blond jokes were actually funny, I was always glad that I was the “smarter” hair color.
Of course, in a strange twist of genetic fate I now have a blondie who calls me mom. Today, we had to take a brief trip to the college so that I could meet up with someone to rehearse (these end of semester concerts are getting ridiculous).
No fewer than three complete strangers commented on how pretty she is, specifically mentioning her blond hair. As a matter of fact she asked me when we got to the car why people think her hair is so pretty.
I wasn’t quite sure how to answer that. (I think I said something dumb like, ‘I don’t know, they just do.”) And I can’t help but wonder to myself if people would still comment if she had my hair color? If her hair changes someday to the sandy hair my dh has now (the source of all this blondness) will she think she is less beautiful? I know, the deep questions I spend my free afternoons pondering.
I wrote last year about my mommy guilt over putting the dutchkid into a preschool two mornings a week this year, which by the way, has turned out to be a great experience. She has thrived in the social environment and really enjoys it. When I chose that particular preschool, it was in part because I heard good things from other parents, but also because it is faith based. I am the product of a Christian education and so almost by default that was always the route I had planned to go.
Over the past few years, however, I have been exposed to and read about the many different schooling options out there. Things that I just never considered before. In my attempts to figure it all out, this past year I read a really interesting book called The Power of Play by David Elkind (the author of The Hurried Child). He talks about how children today are so pushed scholastically from such a young age that they lose the valuable skills provided by self-directed spontaneous play. I felt fortunate that I had chosen a play-based preschool for the dutchkid.
But now I have to choose all over again! We are moving to a much larger community and the options are overwhelming. And ironically now that I’ve educated myself by reading all sorts of books, I feel like it’s such an important decision and I’m worried I’m going to screw it up. My dh likes to remind me that she is only 3, but we will likely be at this duty station until she is through kindergarten. And the all important “they” say that these early years are so important! Not even to mention waiting lists and all the rest.
Right now I’m seriously considering Montessori, an option we didn’t have where we are now. They have multi-age classes with children from ages 3 to 6. So we’d ideally need to decide now if we’re going to try that out this fall. And then there’s the cost of it all, which is about enough to drive my dh to drink. If she weren’t an only child, I think I would keep her at home through kindergarten, the more I learn about homeschooling the more appealing it looks sometimes. I just worry about finding enough social interaction for her, not relying too much on the television and still keeping my sanity. And of course there are zillions of other options as far as religious based education, traditional public education…. Sometimes it feels like parenting is one of those choose-your-own-ending books: “To go down the dark tunnel, turn to page 25. To go into the forest, turn to page 30.”
Which page do I turn to for a happy, well-adjusted, productive member of society?
As a RN, I used to watch and participate in things that made others faint, or freak out. I was known for staying calm in a crisis. I used to poke and prod tiny babies in efforts to help them survive, learn to eat and thrive.
But now? Now I am completely derailed by minor procedures. I dissolve into a puddle of tears and it takes every bit of my willpower to not completely fall apart. Last night the dutchkid fell while at the babysitter’s and required stitches on her chin. I was fine with the blood, I knew she needed stitches and was fine with that initially. I was fine all through the hours in the ER, right up until the dutchkid started to freak out about being held down and they started talking about conscious sedation. Then I was most definitely NOT fine.
Watching her slip under the anesthesia was almost more than I could handle. I still can’t quite put into words why it bothered me so much. Maybe it was because I was so terrified that something was going to happen and I was never going to get her back.
It is a feeling I never want to experience again, and I don’t know how parents with chronically ill children handle it. It makes me feel terrible for any time I ever thought badly of how a parent acted under stress. It makes me wonder if I will ever be able to go back and do that job again. We finally got home at about 4am and I cried my eyes out while she slept off the rest of the medication.
The dutchkid was right as rain today, and is the proud new owner of three stitches. Yes you read that right, all that for three whole stitches. I am officially a parenting pansy.
I have never been a morning person. I have distinct memories of being a small kid and having to wake up very early to go to school. Even though I have always liked school, it was never pretty. I recall numerous mornings trying to get up, get dressed and I just plain couldn’t function. I would cry, whine and beg to sleep longer. Sorry, mom. (This was exacerbated by the fact that I have always been a night owl and would also stay up late reading books).
However, in some cruel twist of fate, I have given birth to a morning person. Which isn’t a surprise, considering I married one. (What was I thinking?!). Well, at least he’s quiet about getting out of bed at the butt crack of dawn, as opposed to the small version of him who runs into my room and trumpets, “Good morning, Mama! I’m hungry!”. Her internal clock doesn’t observe Daylight Savings, and so now I’m getting up an hour earlier than usual. Lovely.
So this morning I did what in military parlance is called “Embrace the suck”. I dragged my sorry self out of bed, and into my running clothes, bundled her up and we went for a run. I have pictures to prove it since I remembered to take the camera.
Once I’m up, I will begrudgingly admit that mornings are beautiful. Not quite as beautiful as my bed, but close.
I finished up the dutchkid’s costume last night. As a certified procrastinator, I was glad to have it done with a few days to spare (although in truth it’s been half done for weeks). Not without some sort of drama, as usual, with any sewing project there comes a point for me where some sort of minor disaster occurs. When I had my sewing machine fixed a few months ago, they oiled the living daylights out of it. It actually leaked oil for a while. Can you sense where I’m going with this? I forgot to double check before I put a sleeve over the arm of my sewing machine and got oil all over it. The costume was probably 90% done at this point. I felt like driving over to the place I had it repaired and throwing a rock in their window. Yeah. Happy Halloween.
But I managed to get most of it out, and while I probably would’ve been happier using a different pattern for the dress I am pretty happy with how it came out overall. I don’t have decent pictures uploaded yet, so you will have to make do with this:
At least the crown didn’t get sewing machine oil on it.
My normal Sunday evening post has been interrupted by the upcoming holiday…
ie: must. finish. sewing.
Published October 10, 2008
Tags: Ezra Jack Keats, kids, reading
My mother-in-law called this morning and she is sick, and decided not to make the long drive to see us this weekend. I felt guilty that I am mildly relieved.
The dutchkid was kind of bummed about it, although I think she was thinking it was going to be my mom because it brought up whether we were going to see Grandpa too (and my father-in-law is no longer with us). I was looking forward to the visit just in that it’s fun to show off your kid to someone who thinks she is as brilliant as you do. My dh had her all ready to show off her verbal skills. He’s determined that she’s a genius because she does have a good memory and can “read” books that we have read often together.
For example, we have been reading the lovely book called Over in the Meadow by Ezra Jack Keats. We borrowed it from the library, but I think I’m going to add it to our permanent collection. It’s a very sweet rhyming and counting book. She can ”read” up until about number five. It goes something like this:
Over in the meadow, in a hole, in a tree
Lived a mother bluebird and her little birdies three.
“Sing!” Said the mother
“We Sing!” Said the three
So they sang and were glad in the hole in the tree.
I think that’s normal for an almost 3 year old, but it sure is cute.
I’ve been feeling nostalgic lately, and I’m thinking it’s the weather. I know the first day of fall was really last week, but today was the first day it really felt like it. Cool enough for long sleeves, which is most welcome after a sweltering southern summer (try saying that seven times fast). It’s ironic to me that the pools have been closed for several weeks now, since there are probably enough warm days still ahead that you could comfortably swim until mid-October. The Labor-Day-time-to-close-the-pool rule is universal, apparently.
When you have a small child each year is always marked with “firsts”. I will miss that part of having a little one, she is growing so quickly it boggles the mind. This summer marked several of them:
The first “big girl bike” with training wheels… and
Swinging on the big girl swings and learning to “pump”.
It’s been a good summer. I hope yours was too.