Who all remembers their high school sporting career and all the awesome moments that were created from it!? Some maybe even game winning shots, or a momentous touchdown, or a triple overtime game, or a hit on someone that blew snot out of your nose, but you knew they felt it! Some even lucky enough to win a state championship! The memories we have are often all so vivid, we can remember them like yesterday, the smell, the feeling, the aches and the pains. It was often a feeling that kept us “going back for more”, fighting for that next win! But today, those days are long gone and are a distant past. But for some of us, we have kids reliving those moments, or practicing to get there, or beginning the journey of sports.
As parents in this current world though, this aspect is a challenge to Karen and I as we seek out common ground of value of sports, compromise, common sense, reality, and what is best for our kids in a world so “ate up” by sports and the dream of them being the next Lebron James or John Elway (for my Chiefs friends out there!). In this world of parenting today, the pressures are there, they are great, as everyone wants their child to succeed. But at what cost? As we have traveled for Nash to play basketball, we have been in some multi-million dollar facilities 100% dedicated to kids sports. The amount of money pouring into “the journey” of a child’s life of sports is virtually unheard of and is borderline insane, but yet we all want them to succeed, so we all push in directions we likely wouldn’t normally push to help give them “better”.
As we as parents in today’s crazy world, I ask, what is all this for? What is the end goal? Where will this child be in 20 years and what is best for them? I think we must focus on questions such as this as we beat the pavement playing in this crazy world otherwise we lose sight of our end goals. Today, there are families missing out on precious time together for meals at the table and missing out on teachable moments outside of sports. The arts, things such as music, band, theater are all taking a back seat because they aren’t “cool”. We have families “going broke” shipping kids all across the state and the nation, pursuing their dream. We should always keep in mind the money spent needs to land a scholarship, otherwise the $250 a month or more spent on sports, could be invested and more than pay for an entire college career of expenses.
Lastly though, the real importance is what is the value of this kid? Does their value come through a round ball or a football because that is the overwhelming emphasis we have placed their life on? Many kids, due to this, feel their only value or self-worth is, is through their success in sports, not success in the classroom, or life relationship skills, or financial intelligence, or even more important, the value of WORK! We can not lose sight of these goals!! We also must instill in them, we want them to be who they are, not who the world or we as parents want them to be. And for this week, some have reached that common ground and had extreme success, while playing D1 basketball, and gaining acceptance into medical school! Great work Dan Thomson! And even better work Kelly Thomson! Your value will go far beyond the round ball, and will change people’s lives. You will soon be saving lives! Making a real difference!
And for the rest of us, let’s find that common ground, that middle ground, of what is truly best for our kids beyond a court, ball field, or any ball, and work to raise great adults who can impact the world in their very own way, be it in a big way or their own way! Remember, practice makes perfect, but doesn’t make “new”. It’s the breadth of experience not the depth of experience that adds to who our kids are. Cheers amigos! And Happy Leadership Thursday!