By: Deirdre Littlefield
As a mother of three, I have spent a lot of time either at a field or in a rink. I thoroughly enjoy watching my boys from day one on a new team. I love to see them timidly approach a new coach with their hand reached out for that first shake. I enjoy seeing them try so hard to learn something new and begin the bond with a new group. Each step of the way there is a coach there to correct a bad habit, cheer on an accomplishment, or to encourage a new friendship.
I often wonder if these coaches realize their impact. Team sports have given my sons the opportunity for really difficult lows and amazing natural highs. It always seems to be the coach’s reaction that echoes in my boy’s ear. The hurt of that loss fades with time, but the reassuring words of the coach remain. My sons have repeated phrases years later that a coach has told them. It’s incredible really.
I’ve learned through the years that even more important than those big games are the practices. Those are the times you bond with my son. I see you pushing him beyond his preconceived capabilities. You are noticing every aspect of his game and take the time to critique each movement. You look almost as happy as he does when he breaks that glass ceiling. He trusts you beyond words, probably more than anyone outside of our family,and for that I am most appreciative.
Team sports have been such a staple in our home for so many years. I am thankful for the friendships they have created and the lessons my guys have learned. I am most grateful for each coach who has taken time out of their lives, away from their families to help my children grow mentally and physically. I only hope you realize your tremendous impact and the appreciation we feel.