...their just going to be bigger and tougher. The opponents I mean. Thats
just the way the ball bounces when your an athlete. There will be times when you come up against those teams who are flat out bigger and sometimes even tougher than you have ever faced before. I think thats
what I love about playing ball. Each time you take the field or step on the court or kneel into the starting blocks you have no idea if you will end up on top when all is said and done, but you go out there anyway and give it all you've got. Some days
your going to win and some days
We are in the middle of basketball season in our house. This is generally what we do during those winter months when our baseball and soccer seasons takes a little break. I (as a mom, a former athlete and basketball coach) couldn't be happier. So each Saturday we head out to watch Al play in the mornings and Blake in the evenings.
Allie's team is actually being matched up against the same opponent for 9 or 10 weeks in a row. There were only enough girls to make two teams in their league this year. So although we know who were going to face each week we are still having a good time. I would like to share with you a statement that Allie shared with us 3 weeks ago as we left her first game of the season. "Mom, those giants, I mean girls, make Goliath and his family look small." I tried not to laugh too hard because I was having similar thoughts myself. When you take a team of 4th
graders and match them up with a team who has a few 6th
graders on it the odds definitely seemed stacked against you. I mean lets be realistic, by 6th
grade many girls have "matured" as much as some adult women if you know what I mean. Anyway, we left that game being defeated by 30 points. Some days
you win and some days
you LOSE. Ouch! The next week our girls played a little better and we walked away with a loss of 16 points. Still, that hurt. I, like Allie, was feeling as though the giants, I mean opponents, would end up stomping us into the ground all 10 weeks. Until, today that is. On the way to the game Allie said, "I think we might win today." We tried to be supportive. "Oh, really?" "Uh- huh. Our coach taught us some plays and I think its going to work," she said. Now thats
a good attitude and although I wasn't feeling as optimistic as my 9year old I sure was proud she was ready to take on those giants for another round of play. Guess who won today? Go ahead and guess. I know by this point you are thinking our giant opponents, right? WRONG. Our girls won. It was amazing! We were so proud(by the way Allie was incredible and I don't say that just because I'm her mom. She really was). 24-22. Our first win.
Then we went over to Blake's game this afternoon. To be honest, Blake plays on a pretty good team. The boys have been playing together for years and they just make it work when their out on that court together. We have gotten used to winning with this group of kids and its really exciting to watch. Oh, sure we lose every now and again, but winning sure is fun. Today we were going to be the underdogs. We had no subs to play and our 5 boys were going to be running that court the entire game. We knew it would be a tough one. Our opponents were a good team. Well coached(I'm sorry I just lost my train of thought as Dave walked into the room wearing my pink pajama pants with big polka dots on them. He looks so funny. I guess I need to catch up on some laundry! He doesn't even care that I'm laughing. We've been in "this" game a long time together). Ok
, back to my point. We ran with them pretty good for most of the game. We had the lead for most of the first half. Then our boys got a little tired and a little frustrated. The other team began to slip away. Not because our boys gave up, but to be honest there are times when the other team is just a better team. In my opinion thats
what happened to us today. I don't mind losing. I think it builds character. I really don't mind losing to a better team. I KNOW it makes us better. When you come up against players who are better than you are you play a better game. It just happens that way. Trust me, I played the game for 8 years and coached the next 10. You seem to kick it up a notch and take yourselves to the next level. Thats
what our boys did today. They just worked together. Their defense was stronger. Their shots were prettier. Their passes seemed to just thread through the defense. They rebounded better. They played like a team and complimented each other. We walked away with a loss, but I think they played the best they ever had. They looked like a team today. I was so proud of them.
As we were driving home I couldn't help but be thankful for those times in our lives over the past couple of years in Ashley's story that Dave and I faced "opponents" who were bigger, better, and more prepared then we were. Although when we were up against "them" it was tough and we were exhausted and even sometimes frustrated and disappointed I know it made us better. Better parents, better people, better believers. We have learned to "gel" more as a team. We have learned to walk away from our defeats and learn from them. We have "passed" the ball to each other when the "defense" in front of us was just too big to get past. All in all this "game" with Ash has been the hardest of our lives, but we are definitely better "players" as a result of getting in the game. I am so thankful we are in it.
Ash attended the games with us today for the first time. She really enjoyed herself. The ball, the lights, the whistles, the buzzers. She did well. A little piece of normal family life for her(at least our normal family life). Ballgames are just a part of who we are and what we do. I'm so, so glad she went. Who knows, in just a few years she might be the one down on that court and Blake and Al will be the ones cheering her on. A mom can still dream.