Thursday, May 5, 2011

My daughter chooses the number 3

I coached my daughter's first ever soccer game last night. She's three. And it was awesome!

There was lots to cherish, but here's one story...

My wife Tamara, daughter Kayley and I arrived as a family, ready for our first soccer game.

When we went over to collect Kayley's jersey, my co-coach asked Kayley if she had a favorite number. Suddenly, memories from my own sports' past came rushing back. Jersey day was always a HUGE deal - everyone has a number they want.

As the coach thumbed through the jerseys I saw number 6 and 8 roll by, and I got excited - those were the numbers that my brother and I used to wear back in our old baseball days; suddenly I felt the urge to romanticize the past by choosing my daughter's jersey number for her.

Thankfully before I could speak up, my daughter replied, "I like three."

I was so happy that Kayley got to select her own jersey number before I could choose for her.

I take at least two things from this experience:

1. I like to think that I'm pretty child-centered and progressive in my parenting and teaching - and I'm pretty reflective, too; yet, it is important to recognize that no one is exempt from the temptation of living vicariously through their children. It takes great awareness, effort and reflection to avoid needlessly taking over.

2. Children don't make good decisions by merely following directions - the only way children can become good choice makers is if we give the opportunity, and our artful guidance, to make their own choices.

Diversity is the spice of life - and I now have a new favorite jersey number, thanks to my daughter!

1 comment:

  1. Imagine my pleasure on the first day of coaching U6 soccer this year... My son Jack asked to be #5 and I had the same rush of emotions because it was my number playing rugby at second row up until 2 years ago. Thanks for the post!!


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