I have to admit it…I hate to admit it. I learned something from Husband this month.
The age requirements for Spring sports around here are weird. Even though the cut-off for schools is September 1, the cut-off for baseball and t-ball is you have to be five by July 31. This is significant for us as the Crazies were born in August. It’s significant because Husband wants to coach the kids he coached in Soccer this Fall, but the Crazies aren’t allowed to play.
I told him to coach anyway. He loves it. The kids would benefit. He’d be happy. The Crazies need to learn that even though they aren’t able to participate in everything, we support our family members no matter what. We’d show up every week and cheer on Dad’s team because that’s what a family does. We had a breakfast conversation about it and everything. They were fine with it.
Then I got an email. There is a local softball league for little girls and their cut-off is July 31. Hmmm…technically Girl-Crazy could play. I immediately dismissed the notion citing “if one can’t play, then neither can play” in my twin-Mom-everything-has-to-be-fair logical brain. I think we all do this, right? We try to make everything even so that no one can come back and say we favored one or the other at any time in their lives ever!
Twin-Mom brains work like that (maybe all Mom brains work like that, but I’m only the mother of twins…it’s all I know…cut me a break)!
I offhandedly mentioned something to Husband about how dumb I thought it was that the age requirements were different. I lightly lamented the fact that she could technically play, but how I’d never do that. Then he said two words that changed the whole thing.
He said, “Why not?”
He then went on to explain that he didn’t think it was fair to hold Girl-Crazy back from something just because Boy-Crazy couldn’t do it. He continued to tell me that one of our jobs as parents was to make sure that our kids have every opportunity that is available and not to withhold anyone from anything that they were actually ready for. Therefore, just because some dumb rules would keep Boy-Crazy from playing t-ball didn’t mean we’d have to hold Girl-Crazy back and we’d actually be making a mistake if we held her back.
I was stunned. He was 100% RIGHT. After all, if Boy-Crazy could have played, we would have let him. We would have encouraged him to do his best even if he was the youngest on the team. There would be no holds barred.
(Then I got into this whole internal dialogue about whether or not I was sexist because I would let him play, but I didn’t even think that she should play and does that make me a bad mother because I was going to completely eliminate this opportunity for her…blah, blah, blah…internal dialogues suck sometimes)!
So, we signed Girl-Crazy up. The situation was explained to Boy-Crazy and Husband told him that he’d be the manager of the t-ball team. Boy-Crazy seemed happy with that because, if nothing else, he enjoys bossing people around.
Now, I want to be clear…this isn’t always the right approach. For instance, I am considering holding the Crazies back another year before they start kindergarten. This is primarily for Boy-Crazy’s maturity and just to give them another year to prepare before entering elementary school. Emotionally, Girl-Crazy could handle it which leads me down the path of the great girl-boy debate.
I can’t tell you the number of people who have asked me if I’m sending her this year and holding him back.
Those questions have caught me completely off guard. If we were holding for academic reasons or if one of them had a delay, I could see it, but emotional and maturity issues? Nah…they’re both being held for a year. Who could it hurt?
So, it’s not always cut and dry.
Have you guys run into any situations where you would have one child do something and not another? I’m just wondering the mind-set of other multiple parents when situations like this arise.
Come follow along on our journey of Craziness at Unexplained X2!