Thursday, June 17, 2010

The Sport that Doesn't Require Lace-Ups

Sometimes, as parents, we must face up to and accept unpleasant truths about our children and make the best of it. My own parents, for example, had to accept the fact that by the time I turned seven, I had already perfected the art (i.e., annoying habit) of sarcasm -- but my sarcasm was balanced out by a desperate desire to please people. This odd pairing made me a teacher's favorite so long as when I raised my hand in class, my biting observations of whatever we were discussing didn't reference anyone in the room. But that's ABPA.

As to my own children, I am having to accept the truth that Casey has very little manual dexterity (he's seven and can't tie his own shoes) and a fear of trying new physical things (he can't ride a bike and flat out refuses to actually try). Because he can't tie his own shoes, I have to limit his involvement in certain sports -- you know -- he can't participate in all the ones where he would have to tie his shoes. You may think that this problem is solved with velcro-fastened shoes, but it's not -- for two reasons: 1) the selection of velcro-fastened shoes is minimal to non-existent once you get out of the little kid sizes; and 2) velcro-fastened shoes lose their shape sooner and get very loose very quickly; and 3) I've never seen velcro-fastened cleats. So that means Casey can be a gymnast (he's 7 and weighs 87 pounds, so that's probably not happening), a wrestler (I'm sorry, but I refuse to go to wrestling meets and watch sweaty boys in unitards wallow around on the floor) or a swimmer. We picked swimming. Or rather, I picked swimming, mainly because he'll get a one hour workout four days a week and that can't hurt, right?

At Casey's first swim team practice two weeks ago, I was really impressed with how well he did. His only instruction in swim strokes has pretty much come from me -- though Joe did help him refine his crawl one afternoon at Heidi's. He's very relaxed in the water and he's fast. Joe says that's because he's so buoyant, but to me he seems really natural.

Casey's the one in the middle of the photo, closest to the yellow rope. Thursday is conditioning day so the kids swim a length, get out, do push-ups, get back in, swim a length, get out, do jumping jacks, get back in, swim a length, get out, do squats, and on and on for an hour. There are some whiny girls on the swim team who don't like conditioning day, but Casey doesn't complain and does whatever the coach says right away. I told him this afternoon that I was very proud of him for that -- he is showing respect for the coach.

That's his coach right there in the red shorts. Nice guy, patient but firm (especially with the whiny girls). So far, so good with the swimming.

The jury is still out on his other summer activity, Musical Theater Camp. It wraps up tomorrow, so hopefully I can give you an exciting summary of his MTC experience that does not include Flamingo Joe dropping his head into his hands every time Casey does a spin and flashes "jazz hands." But I wouldn't get my hopes up if I were you.

1 comment:

  1. OOOOHHH! I'm excited to hear about MTC! Can Joe do a guest post with his feelings on it too???


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