How many times have you gotten to your child’s basketball game only to learn that they’d forgotten a very important piece of equipment–shoes, socks, ankle braces? My kids have forgotten shoes, sox, even uniforms and called me in a panic. Mom, have you left the house yet? Can you hurry?
Enough of this, I decided. There must be an easier way. And there was.
Every time we got into the car, I’d run down a list. If I forgot, my kids would often say, Mom, do your checklist. Shoes? Socks? Ankle braces? Uniform? Water bottle? Both uniforms?
Are you sure?
We all know that it’s important for athletes to arrive at their games with all the proper equipment. But in the hustle of making sure their bags are packed for the game, we forget that there is some emotional equipment we as parents need to bring to the game too. Especially for basketball season.
If you’re a basketball parent, you know that basketball gyms are breeding grounds for a lot of competitive emotions. As basketball parents we should be prepared for the fray that will inevitably come.
As you go to your child’s next basketball game, be sure you take some all the tools you will need:
The ability to laugh. No sports parent should enter the gym without a sense of humor. Find the fun and joy in your child’s game instead of worrying about how many minutes they are on the court, how many rebounds they have or how bad the ref’s calls are.
The strength to ignore comments. It’s easier to hear trash talk and negative remarks while sitting in a gym than when watching an outdoors game. To enjoy the game, you’ll have to tune them out and if you can’t, then choose your seat carefully!
The willingness to forget. If you cannot turn a deaf ear to the ignorant and senseless remarks you hear, then you better develop a thick skin and the ability to forget. If not, you might find yourself saying things you’ll regret.
The ability to let go and let the coach do his job. Please do not coach your child from the bleachers. It’s distracting to them, undermines the coach, and puts pressure on your child to perform up to your standards.
Self-control. You may think it, you may even whisper it under your breath, but do not say it out loud. If you can’t say anything nice about a player, don’t say anything at all. Someone is always listening.
And last, but not least, a bleacher chair. Seriously. You need one of these if you are going to spend any length of time sitting on those rock hard bleachers.
If you have all these “tools” in your bag, then you are ready to head to the game. Enjoy!
Janis B. Meredith writes a sportsparenting blog, http://jbmthinks.com. She’s been a sports mom for 20 years, and a coach’s wife for 28, and sees life from both sides of the bench. You can also follow her on facebook and twitter.