Well, for the first time I had to make a decision to have my daughter skip a basketball game in favor of her dance team practice. Did I like to make this decision…no. Was it the right decision…yes. I say it was the right decision, but I am not sure I really believe that. For me, I would rather have her play basketball, but I guess it isn’t what is important to me…right?!

The way it works in Elkhorn is the tryouts for the next season of basketball take place about a week after the basketball season ends, which is in April. The season doesn’t start until October. Madison really didn’t want to play basketball, but both my wife and I encouraged her to tryout and she could decide if she wanted to play if she made one of the teams. Well, she made the second team and decided that she did want to play. Then, later in the summer, around July, she also decided she wanted to be on her dance studio’s dance team. This is where it gets sticky…
Both dance and basketball are on Saturdays.

I am friends with the Director at the studio and she has been very good to me and our kids(our youngest son, Logan, also dances on the team). When this conflict became evident, I was quick to talk with Sandi about our conflict. She has been good about trying to schedule around our kids other conflicts, but just couldn’t do it this weekend. So, my dilemma was, does she skip her dance number and get an unexcused absense or does she skip her basketball game and possibly leave her team short handed. I decided to have her miss her game, but wasn’t happy about my decision.

My wife disagrees with trying to do so much on Saturdays for Madi and has talked about her quitting basketball. I have told her that that is not an option. I have seen the effects of kids quitting team sports and the pressure that puts on other kids that stay with the team and I won’t be part of that. This decision making goes back to when I was a kid and has stuck with me ever since. When I was a kid, I participated in a jump rope a-thon with a team of friends. Shortly after signing up for this event, I found out that baseball tryouts were at the same time! I wanted to go to the baseball tryouts in the worst way! I wanted to drop out of the jump rope a-thon. My parents wouldn’t let me! ” You can’t let down your team,” they told me. I knew this had to be hard for my dad too as he was a huge supporter of me in baseball and a great baseball player in his time. I would imagine he felt much the same way I did!

So, I am going to do my best to manage these sports going forward, communicating with both coaches and trying to make the best of a stressful situation. Quitting is not an option. I am going to continue to make decisions that are in the best interest of my daughter and not those that would make me the happiest. I am hoping by operating this way, that my daughter can learn a valuable lesson that will stick with her as my jump rope a-thon did for me. Next April, maybe we will skip the basketball tryouts all together. That was really hard for me to type!