No Sweat

Anyone who knows us knows that we are arguably one of the most competitive families around. My husband and I are both college coaches, and all three of our kids are incredibly active. We schedule most of our lives around game and practice schedules, and for the most part I think it is a fabulous way to spend our family time, and all of our money.

I have been extremely excited for our youngest to get into the mix like her siblings. She has been chomping at the bit for probably two years and I just know she is going to love competing as much as the rest of us do. There have been small signs of her passion for sport…like the time she hauled off and slashed Nate in a family hockey game in the basement. She got a penalty for that one. Or…there was that time that she hit Nate across the face in the backseat of the car because I told her she was going to take a nap when we got home.

“I know, Nate…I will wait until you are out of arm’s reach next time.”

Oh, and then there was the time that she ran full speed across the room and tackled Nate to the ground at his knees. It was a brilliant take-down. Cataloging her track record I think I’ll encourage Nate to wear his hockey gear when he is just hanging around the house.

There are also the multiple times through the day that I see Kiana running around the downstairs loop: entryway, kitchen, playroom, entryway, kitchen, playroom…Sometimes she has a ball on her foot, and sometimes she is timing herself while she counts out loud. I should stop her to tell her that there is a number between 15 and 17, but I think her teachers will be better equipped to pass that information along.

Ki loves gymnastics, and in an effort to save some of our sport money, we enrolled her in a little less rigorous program this winter. It is not as intensive and if she were any other kid, she would be thrilled just to be hanging out with her pal who is also enrolled. Oh no! Not our Kiana. She has commented on more than one occasion that she cannot do somersaults at this gymnastics and she wants to go back to the place where she could “jump to the sky on the tramp-o-thing!”

The first soccer camp she attended took place at the indoor bubble in Stillwater, MN. She was in her shinguards for four hours before the practice was supposed to start and seemed happy the entire time, but when it was over she came storming off the pitch with that crazed look in her eyes.

“What’s wrong Kiana?”

“We didn’t even have a game with goals! I hate this soccer.” I started immediately drafting the letter of apology to the first opponents she might face in whatever sport catches her fancy.

With all of my kids, I hope they find a sport that suits their personalities and their gifts, and I don’t think I am too far off with my assessment when I say I think she would make a heck of a hockey player. She likes to hit, she likes to go fast, she is not afraid of falling, and then the heads of her opponents are already helmetted. That has to be a little less liability for us right?

She is around hockey a lot, and she has been on skates for a couple years now, but she always gets pretty frustrated that she can’t keep up. She is getting much more proficient at skating, and our last outing on the ice she sprinted from one side to the other, only stopping at a bank of snow on the other side. She has never really wanted to slowly take on anything, and I know she will seem much less angry at the world when she can channel some of her aggression in the positive sporting arena.

In his perfectly presented parental encouragement, my husband suggested that Kiana might like to try playing hockey, like her sister and brother.

“Oh no dad. I’m going to play figure skating, because I don’t like to sweat!”

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