26 July 2012

It's for your own good!

Having the boys both attend figure skating lessons together is really easy.  I don't drive all over town for various activities; we don't squeeze activities into multiple days per week; there's not a huge load of different gear to lug and manage.  It's all so very easy.  Except, of course, for the fact that I know darn well A2 doesn't love figure skating.  I knew this then and I know it now.  But I let that nagging knowledge fall right out of my head and continued to sign him up skating anyhow.  Now that was hard!  Don't get me wrong, he never hated it.  I never forced him to engage in a sport he found utterly loathsome or anything like that.  But at the prospect of returning to the rink weekly, he's never exactly been filled with overwhelming joy and excitement.

So this upcoming Wednesday, A2 will take his very last skate lesson.  He's done.  He stopped having fun so I have no choice.  He's asked for soccer and baseball next year.  I am not shocked.  Team sports perfectly suit his personality.  But when did that happen?  When did he diverge so deeply from his brother, who wants to repeat the same routine over and over again until he makes micro-adjustments to his timing?  When did A2 become own person?  It's bittersweet, really. 

In the same respect, basketball was not going to well for A1.  He perseverated over rule violations, wondering why teammates and opponents felt the need to bend the rules laid down by Coach.  He was agitated by aggressive players and their resultant aggressive plays.  And when that basketball somehow ended up in his hands, he immediately passed it, obviously lacking the hunger for ball that has possessed his little brother. 

But unlike figure skating which can go, and has gone, on for what seems like an undetermined amount of time, basketball camp only lasts for a single week.  A1 wanted to quit after the first day but I asked him to tough it out because LIFE is a team sport.  There will always be times when he doesn't agree with those around him.  There will always be times when he doesn't win.  These are important lessons.  I have continued to reinforce a message that we always emphasize in our family, "You may not be able to change the situation, but you can always change your attitude regarding that situation."  So, basically, I have Tiger Mom'ed him into an activity he found loathsome...for his own good.

And you know what?  Tomorrow is the last day and he's a little sad because he learned to enjoy it.  He's discovered that while he may not love the games, he's very enamored of the rules of the game and knowing the names of the different passes, dribble techniques, and shooting styles.  And he's learned to focus his attention on the nice kids he does like instead of the ones who bother him.  He's proud that he will be a better basketball player on the playground at recess next year for having continued this course of study instead of quitting (as if that were really a choice!).

Go, Tiger Mom, go!


Rachel said...

I am admitting here that I had to look up what "perseverated" means. Nice SAT word!

Lam said...

It's actually frequently used psychology jargon so, sadly, it's not particularly special for me to know it.

And you are already quite the wordsmith, what with your consistently kicking my WWF butt andall, so your admission doesn't tarnish your reputation in any way!