I am a soccer mom.
Not on purpose.
I have encouraged all four of my kids to play all the sports and they have. I’ve been every kind of Mom: football, volleyball, basketball, tennis, swim, ballet, equestrian, a short, but spirited round of gymnastics, BMX (the kind where he jumps off tall buildings in a single bound for NO APPARENT REASON OTHER THAN TO MAKE ME PEE MY PANTS!), wrestling, indoor rec soccer, and – of course – fastpitch and my beloved baseball.
Not once, not ever did I ever, encourage any of my cherished offspring to play outdoor soccer. Never. I want to be clear that I actively avoided this sport with my entire being. One of my older kids brought it up once and I made it very clear that there are no rain outs in soccer as there are in baseball. The idea was squashed instantly and we moved on. Like sane people who appreciate being dry.
Dry, you say? Dry? But, there are no rainouts in football! No, there are not. You do, however, have covered stands most of the time. So there is that.
For many years now I’ve felt safe in the bubble I’ve created for myself. I’ve shaken my head in disbelief at the soccer moms and dads standing on the sidelines of rain, snow, and hail drenched fields as I drove by.
What are they doing? Don’t they know there are INDOOR sports?! Don’t they get that they don’t have to freeze their shin guards off in a monsoon to have active, healthy kids?
DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND THAT SOCCER FREQUENTLY ENDS IN A TIE?!
And that is it right there. Even more than the freezing weather conditions that are inevitable during soccer season, I am driven away from it by the fact that they let the games end in a tie. Why? I don’t get it. Football has overtime. Baseball has extra innings. Swimmers are timed to the bajillionth of a second. BMX is pretty much, you know, whoever lives or breaks the fewest bones. There is no need for a tie. Play a couple more minutes, People! Kids need to learn about winning and losing. I’m already out here, not able to feel my feet or my “everything else” in this cold. Finish it, for the love already!
My middle son decided he wanted to play outdoor soccer with some friends this year. He suckered me with “Mama, its great conditioning for baseball season” and “It’s the only sport I’ve never tried.”
So here I am. On the sideline. Like all those crazy fools. I have no clue what is going on out there. I know they keep running back and forth a lot. I know it took over an hour to score one point and I know they ended in a 1-1 tie that had me throwing my phone in the grass. (Discreetly, of course. No one likes a poor sport.) I know that my son scored a goal. And I know that the look on his face made it very clear to me why those parents stood out in sub zero temps all those years.
My son LOVES soccer. He adores it. He runs his legs off up and down that field no matter what the weather and never gives up. For that, for him, I guess I will do anything.
Even outdoor soccer.
Better yet, I found a sweet ass parking space right next to the sideline this week. I’ll just consider that a fully heated suite with the best view in the house for soccer in the snow.
I might be crazy, but I’m nobody’s fool.