Laying in bed this past Friday night I found myself tossing and turning, and mentally debating the amount of therapy my children may need someday. I couldn’t stop worrying about how I had acted that evening, and I began judging myself (…something I do more than I would like. Ugh, parenthood!) You see, earlier that night I had been sitting on the bleachers at my daughter’s baseball practice shouting out advice. It sounds a lot like this:
“Eyes on the ball!”
“Throw it, don’t run!”
I do this often, and find myself being one of the only parents that shouts from the bleachers. I’ve always felt like these reminders are needed, a parenting habit that I’m assuming never dies? It’s pure habit to always give advice, reminders, criticism, and encouragement. Except sometimes it seems like there is a lot more criticism and reminders coming out of my mouth. I forget that there are coaches on the field, and I should probably keep my mouth shut. I’ve even heard the comment, “Wow, you’re harder on her than I am,” from her Coach. Which should have been a red flag, but I ignored it. Stupidly.
To be fair, I am also always cheering, for my child and other children, because I know kids need that. Yet I’m also the mom I have silently judged before. The mom that yells from the stands and won’t be quiet. The mom that gets a little TOO into how the game is played, and how my kids are doing. I’m not obnoxious (I hope), I’m not mean or violent, but I watch it all like a hawk, and I’m not shy about mothering my child from the bleachers. I’m the helicopter mom of the baseball stands, if you will. Which I don’t want to be! I’m not like that anywhere else, besides at home just being a mom, but somehow I find that when I step on a sports field I become someone else.
Someone I don’t want to be.
I want to be the mom that my kids enjoy having in the stands. Always watching, always encouraging. I want to let the Coaches do their job and be a little more quiet. I want to criticize less and let them learn the game on their own, instead of always shouting out corrections and advice. I want my kids to light up when they see me in the stands, and be happy to see me there. They don’t need me for sports advice (because let’s be honest, I’m no sports expert), they need be to just be there. To be present and happy not critical.
I’m always surprised by motherhood, by the things I end up doing that I thought I NEVER would. I never thought I would be a helicopter sports mom, and I am.
I’m hoping to change that. Because we have a game tonight, and this mama needs some help;)