Since my boys are only 4 & 5 you would think we wouldn’t already be busy with extra-curricular activities. Well, that hasn’t always been the case. Just this past fall, both boys were on different soccer teams and my 5 yr old participated in Upward football – which overlapped soccer a few weeks. At one point I was shuttling a kid to a practice and/or game daily. While these programs had their rewards, I had to step back and ask myself “Why are we doing this?”. We were sacrificing family time at home and many times our dinners were late and not always very nutritious.
When registration for basketball came up, my 5 yr old assumed he would play. He loves to play basketball and I really enjoy watching him play, but we decided not to participate and take this spring semester off completely from sports – no basketball, no soccer. It seems silly to even be writing this, he’s only 5 for pete’s sake. But like so many we get caught up in not wanting him to ‘miss out’ on anything. Silly
Can I tell you how nice it has been already? Not only are our afternoons calmer, but I can tell a difference in the boys’ behavior. Shocking, isn’t it?
Lest you think I have it all under control, the crazy over-booker inside of me almost signed both boys up for swim. I thought “we have all this free time (right) so we could do swim”. I really am insane at times. I fought the urge and we are still sports-free this semester.
Let me make it clear that I don’t think these activities are bad. In fact, in addition to the exercise and learning of the actual sport, they have learned valuable social skills. They are just not the best thing for my family at this time. There will be many years to enjoy these activities – in moderation.
We’ll see what the fall semester holds. Stay tuned.
How do you feel about sports and other extra-curricular activities? I would love to hear how you balance being involved without getting over-booked.