My kids hate to lose. They hate when refs make bad calls and coaches play the third line at the end of a tied hockey game. They want to be the first one at practice and the last one to leave. Tryout season is like Disneyland in our house because what’s more exciting than giving everything you have to the sports you love and (hopefully) making the best team?
They can and do turn any and everything into a competition.
“Beat you to the car,”
Or much to my chagrin,
“I bet I can get Mom to yell first.”
Their weekend mood is usually determined by the outcome of whichever game they play first on Saturday morning. And our weeknights are spent driving from soccer to hockey back to soccer again — because there are three kids who each play two sports every season.
They love to compete. And I freaking love to watch them.
I don’t know how it happened, really. Their dad and I didn’t necessarily intend on raising the most competitive kids to ever exist, but I guess it is really no big surprise.
We used to get in screaming matches over Scrabble games when we were dating. Competition is in our blood — and now it is in our kids, too.
I imagine we aren’t the only crazy-competitive family out there, either. Chances are if you can relate to these things, then you are just like us — and you love it!
Your weekends are spent at the sports field
Yes, you set your alarm on both Saturday and Sunday and no, you don’t mind! You love watching your kids play as much as they love playing.
When that alarm rings loudly at whatever-time a.m., you hop out of bed and proudly adorn yourself in the team colors, grab your lawn chair and snacks for the day before your kids send you on a last-minute hunt for shin guards or mouth guards or whatever item didn’t make it in the bag after the last practice.
You love being a sports mom so much that that work that comes with it? It’s just tailgating, baby. You’re ready and excited to sit your butt at whatever fields pop up on your calendar for the weekend and there is truly nowhere you would rather be!
You make everything a competition
I know, I know, as adults we should not be encouraging our kids to ALWAYS compete with one another, but if it isn’t broken. . .
My kids thrive in competition, so yes, I voluntarily make everything a competition. Putting the laundry away? Yup, let’s see who can get their clothes away first! Yardwork? Same thing. And yes— I even offer prizes. Sometimes money. Terrible, I know! But it makes the competition that much sweeter and my kids work that much harder.
If you are like us, you can’t help but add to the competition-insanity amongst your team of children. On the off-chance that there is a weekend without sports or a pandemic shuts them down long-term, we arrange for town-wide scavenger hunts, survivor-like challenges, and blindfolded eating contests. The show MUST go on.
You provide two dinners (and showers) most days
Chances are, you are shuffling your kids from school to practice to home to practice to siblings’ practice all week long. Some practices start after school and others start right in the middle of that thing that non-sports families have called “dinner time.”
When your athlete has dinner at 4 p.m. and goes to an intense practice, they come home STAAAAARVING — and quite smelly. So you, Supermom, provide them with two dinners and all the clean towels they need.
You bond over shows like “Dude Perfect” and “Survivor”
While most families are watching wholesome movies and young YouTubers making slime, you and your crew can’t wait for the newest “Dude Perfect” (or “Survivor”) because watching grown men compete, create, and be athletic as if they were still teenagers is SO FUN!
As a spectator to the fun among these guys, you feel like you are in on the action. And it is one of the few things that everyone in the family (regardless of age) equally enjoys!
You laugh and cry and win and lose together
When one of you loses, you all lose. When one wins, you all jump for joy and celebrate together. You may cry at the National Anthem before each game or when your child finally gets the goal they have been so close to getting all season.
You host team parties and everyone chips in to make it a success. And when those games happen (you know the ones with the last minute PK or the one where the parents were screaming at the refs and you just don’t know whose side you are on), you all talk it out for hours upon hours.
You and your kids together — you are a team of your own. And you do it ALL together — win, lose, cry, laugh. And you sure as hell better love every minute and hold on to every competitive moment because it will all be over in the blink of an eye.
This post originally appeared on TodayShow.com