This being my first blog post written after a stranger and his daughter so kindly accepted my son’s intense out burst of rejection during basketball practice one evening last week. This has been his very first experience with a city league, team sport ~
To “that dad” ….
Not even sure where one begins to thank a dad they’ve never met on a blog post he may never see but here goes my best efforts:
Things you do when your kid gets the chance to play a “real” sport for the first time…1) you have “the” talk with his coach whom you’ve never even met about the uncertainties of it 2) you go to sign up and get him “pumped” about something your not even sure he’ll be willing to do past the first practice! 3) you go all out with some cool basketball gear and shoes to help him realize he’s part of a “team” sport 4) practice starts and ……and you pray for him and you pray as you do each new endeavor he begins that he just “survives” the first one 5) you make it to the first game of the season and you and him both realize “it’s real” …and though he can’t fully understand the game at this point he has a jersey and he is part of the team 6) as practices keep going ….you see him begin to grow weary …. he comes to you and talks about how he cannot do what the other kids can do and sink a basketball, this upsets him and though he continues to go to practice, he doesn’t feel as good about it as he did …… y’all still with me reading this?
7) “That dad”…. he changed it for Connor and he has no idea!!! He brought his daughter along to practice while his son practiced with the team… (a daughter I’d love to run up to and greet with a hug and a “thank you” but then she wouldn’t even know why the big deal!) I call him …”that dad” because my husband, like myself, is often so busy running referee of who did what, when and where…by the time we get to actually talk with an adult we are usually already quite involved with the kids or children in the room that adults are more of a passing thought! So, “that dad” on the first night of bringing his daughter could have been upset with Connor because he was actually mad that this little girl was on the basketball court while “his team” was practicing!!! That’s right, Connor was calling out this little girl ….one of the true black and white and no gray areas of his way of thinking ….”she’s not on the team, she should not be out here shooting hoops.” Anyway, it continued to bother him until Connor did what sometimes he just does ….he walked right up to her and introduced himself!! (Now, don’t ask me if his next move was to politely ask her to leave the court because I was not there but yes, he has it in him at times!) According to Allen by the end of the practice session Connor had a new friend and proceeded to introduce her to his team mates. This girl has come back with her father, “that dad” the last couple of practices and did so this week as well. Whenever there is a part of practice that Connor needs to work on something different than some of the presses, my husband and Connor ….and this little girl …and “that dad” are at a different goal shooting hoops. This Wednesday night was no different except for what I’m about to explain ….but first, did I mention ….about this little girl, maybe all of 6 or 7 years old, my husband said she can sink a basket like nobody’s business!!!! So, at one point these four end up around a goal and this little girl who was in a take charge kind of mode starts telling Connor how to hold the ball and finally after several attempts and her demands this ONE AMAZING LITTLE GIRL instructs Connor on the PERFECT “Granny Shot!” …..and guess what? IT WENT IN!!!! High fives by “that dad” and my husband and this little girl starts screaming “He did it!” Connor did it!” ….For just a moment, Connor had his moment with his team mates and coaches ……because of this little girl and “That dad”!!!!!
So, things you do when your kid gets to play a “real” sport for the first time….. number 8) Thank “That dad” for teaching his little girl to look past differences and accepting a basketball player who needed some extra coaching and seeing fit on how to help him even when he first wanted no part of it! To “That dad” ….we think you are doing an excellent job raising your daughter to be able to see the world like this and please know that she made a HUGH impact on our kid’s first experience with a “real” sport!