There are many things I’ve learned about myself since becoming a parent. I’ve learned how long I can go without showering. I’ve learned just how far I’m willing to lower my culinary standards. But the lesson that has surprised me the most? How much I love being a sports parent.
I was not an athletic kid; in my youth you would have found me onstage with the other drama geeks, or singing in the chorus, rocking our polyester skirts. (Side note: I even spent a year in my Jr. High marching band playing the glockenspiel. Google it. I’ll wait. Awesome, right?) These extra curricular activities provided opportunity for parental support in the forms of plays and concerts and such. Our parents sat, patiently, appreciatively, quietly. Then, when the appropriate time came, they applauded— perhaps out of relief that it was over— but it was all very civilized. Never did my mother leap up and scream, “Yeah, Lisa! You emote on that line! SHOW ME WHAT YOU’RE FEELING!” Never did my father break the respectful silence of a concert to shout, “I CAN’T BELIEVE YOU DIDN’T HIT THAT NOTE! GET YOUR HEAD IN THE CONCERT!” There were no waves, no foam fingers, no extraordinary signs of heated emotion of any kind.