Let's face it, either we are one, we've used one, or we covet one. or all.
As a Dad, I consider myself a coach. I coach my kid(s). Not like a soccer coach, by putting them through drills and such to get them ready for the big game on Friday, but more like guiding them along to get through the big game of life at the end of, well, actually it never ends until it ends. Where am I going with this? Not really sure, but here's this:
We signed Bryce up for kindergarten level basketball through our town's rec department. Basically the kids get together for 45 minutes on a Saturday morning and chase bouncing balls around the gym, occasionally throwing them toward a basket. Good times!
When we got to the gym on the first day, we were a little surprised to see one of our neighbors, Ben, as one of the coaches; he typically coaches jr high ball. I sat down to help Tracey get Bryce's shoes on, and Ben said to me, "are you going to stick around? we could use you as another coach."
Um, excuse me?
Here's my basic knowledge of bball: try to put the round ball in the round hoop. Truthfully I totally understand the game, but my interest in the sport is very, very low. Suddenly I was being asked to help coach a buncha 5-6 year olds in their first ever run in with a coached basketball 'team'.
We went every week, and every week i had a group of little buggers to work with. We had fun. We got frustrated. We learned some things (for example: kids like to get drinks of water every 3-4 nano seconds, even if they have done nothing to break a sweat). There were even a few weeks where the real coaches weren't there (alternately, not the same weeks). But me? I was there.
I showed up. One of the days I was so sick with bronchitis that i could barely jog half way across the court (side to side!) withought being winded. I SO didn't want to coach. I wanted to sit in the chairs with the rest of the parents, drink coffee, and watch Bryce school the other kids. But no. The head coach wasn't there, so i HAD to coach, because it just won't work with only 2. And we did alright! My group of kids was fairly attentive (thank GOD), and we had some good cough inducing laughs.
One of the weeks was the obligatory team photo week, and I was asked to stand in with the team. Here it is: (Bryce is in the front row, second from the left!)
|2012 Hartford Rec Kindergarten Basket Ball|
After the last week, a few of the kids came up and gave me a hug while thanking me for coaching them. It nearly melted my heart. On the way out of the school, 2 families stopped me to thank me for working with their kids. What a great feeling.
So not only did I help the kids, they helped me. Their showing of gratitude helped me to realize that even the little things we do make a difference. Not to everyone, and not all the time, but they make a difference.
The next time you find yourself wishing that you, too, could be a 'coach', take a look around. I'll bet (not really) that someone is looking at you, watching you, as a Coach. If not, and coaching is something that you want to do, seriously consider checking with your local Parks and Rec department. Our town is small, but we are constantly looking to fill holes in schedules. And for kids, you don't have to be a subject matter expert; you just have to show up, be enthusiastic, and let them have fun.
Make it a great weekend!!!!