It is still January, so…Happy New Year 2016.
Well, It has been a while since I blogged and there is a lot that has happened. Good and not so good…I am very sad to say that my 13-year-old has decided to quit the travel level softball (“A ball”). It was not an easy choice for her. She has been mulling the thought of quitting travel ball since the end of last season. She has played for the last 3 + years, so she is quite used to the rhythm of rigorous practices and the busyness of the game. She has also had her share of injuries and growing pains as she grew up playing this sport. Over the last few years she has given up many weekends in order to play the sport she loved. We are very proud of the fact that she was willing to choose to join A ball and choose to go to practices and games for the last few years. Joining the travel ball was her choice since we warned her before joining that it was quite rigorous compared to recreation softball. She still wanted to do it.
It has been a great experience for her to learn what working hard means. At the travel ball team she learnt discipline and that she was expected to perform and do her very best every time she played. In the particular team she was in, she was expected to behave her best when she wore her travel jersey because she was representing the team even when she was off the field. All these were good lessons for her that she would have never learnt otherwise. Honestly, from a parents point of view, this was a great experience for kids in the 10U-12U age group. The coaching is still very lenient and not as rigorous as the 14U and up age group. So we are glad she got to experience this. This experience has also given her more confidence to umpire games for recreation softball during summer. Honestly, we didn’t think she would last more than a year. But we were surprised when she kept going on for 3+ years and during that time she has been an excellent player. We are very proud of this.
For her, it was about proving to herself if she could rise up to this level of play and she convinced herself that she could do it. She made many friendships while playing that she will miss. Their team actually made it 13th on the ASA Nationals for 12U level which was not an easy feat for 12-year-old girls. So we are very proud of her and her team. As she is about to go to high school next year, she has been thinking about the dedication that is required to play at this level and if she wanted to put in the effort required to continue playing. Since she is not willing to put in her best effort, she decided not to play travel ball. She is actually an excellent student and consistently is in the top of her AP classes and works most days until late hours at night doing homework. So she has been thinking a lot about the time-consuming aspect of travel ball and if she wants to actually play softball in college or not.
Playing or not playing, we wanted it to be her choice. We strongly believe that by the time kids leave home to go to college that they learn to make their own choices and know the importance and consequences of their choices. So we made her write the pros and cons of travel softball and think about it for a month. It was very difficult for her. She would mull about it every week and ask us what were some of the tough choices we had to make in life. But in the end she decided to not play travel level softball. She may still play rec or high school ball so she has not completely quit softball. Who knows..may be she will miss it so much that she may want to play “A ball” again. But for now she is having to pleasantly learn about social life during weekends and dedicate more time to her other passion “computer graphics”. If she lets me, I will post link to her art sites later.
Well, the good news is my 10-year-old is still very much into travel softball and enjoying every aspect of it. Hopefully she will continue and their team will make it to Nationals this summer and….I will still be writing about softball.
Take care and have a prosperous New Year!
PS: If your kids want to venture into A ball, many teams are having tryouts this time of the year so just check out their travel ball website and go try out.