I have had a day today.
Like I’m sitting on the floor of the girls’ locker room while my kids are at swim practice because my laptop died and this is the only place where there is a useable outlet and these are the only minutes I’ve had to myself to get anything done kind of a day.
So let me just share this story with you.
Because I really want to get out of this f*cking locker room, and there is a lifeguard who is literally sweeping the floor around me as I sit here.
I know I’ve been talking a lot about swimming lately, but I just learned a pretty important parenting lesson the other day.
It’s one I’ve been on the other end of many, many times, but not so much on the parenting side of it.
When we switched teams, I was very worried about Number 7.
She has only ever had me as her coach and she’s a little undpredictable and she’s the youngest kid on this new team.
So on the first day, I sat with her on the bleachers near the end of the pool until practice was about to start, and as soon as reality set in, she started to cry, and I started to internally panic, but I was able to detangle myself from her and go sit far across the pool where the parents are allowed to stay during practice.
I watched Number 7 sit on the bleachers and refuse to get in the pool for an entire hour.
I wanted so badly to say something. I wanted so badly to talk to her. To make sure she was alright.
About five minutes before practice was supposed to end, I saw Number 7 go over to the coach and say something to him, and then I watched her sit back down.
When practice was over just a few minutes later, she told me what she had asked.
She had asked the coach if she could come and talk to me, and he told her, “Nope. Practice isn’t over yet.”
And she sat back down and waited.
And then the next time she came to practice she was fine and she got in when everyone else did and she swam the whole time and afterward she told me she had so much fun.
So the moral of the story is, especially for sports parents…
STAY AWAY and BUD OUT.
Your kids will be fine. The coaches know what they are doing.
And when you try to interfere, when you don’t physically leave the area, when you meddle and fear that your kids will be traumatized, what you are actually doing is making their transition much harder, and you are also making the coach’s job extremely difficult.
Let the coaches be in charge.
It will be good for your kid, and, once you let go, you will find it is GREAT for you.
Even when you are sitting on the floor of the locker room.