My son had a two-day soccer tournament out of town. I wasn’t sure how I would manage being gone all weekend with my husband’s recent knee injury and my daughter’s swim training schedule. I texted another soccer mom and asked if she would be willing to have my son stay with her at the hotel. Then I could get my daughter to her swim practice early the next morning before heading back to the soccer tournament. She said yes without hesitation.
I was able to manage the madness at home a little easier. I could breathe a sigh of relief, knowing my son was in good hands.
This is why sports parents are the best kind of friends to have.
Teens who are committed to a sport endure intense training and hard competition. It’s an incredible sacrifice for the athletes, and their parents.
Parents of teen athletes are often overwhelmed with the relentless schedules, exhausting travel, and endless conflicts that come with trying to be there for our kids. These are long and tiring days spent supporting our kids. And because of that, we build a lasting bond with other parents.
Take a look at a sporting event and you’ll notice that the parents are friends. Because we spend so much time together, those other parents become our greatest support system and closest confidants. They become your community as you all work together for the common good of your kids. These friendships withstand the stress of competition and the frequent overwhelming exhaustion.
Among my circle of sports parent friends, our mantra is always, “Someday, we’ll miss this.” And we know it’s true. We lift each other up with conversation and laughter. We cheer for each other’s kids and share the challenges and triumphs in our everyday lives. And we complain about the sacrifice of time, money, and energy for our kids. But we all agree, we wouldn’t have it any other way.
As the season progresses, we need each other to buoy our sinking spirits with stories and jokes as we watch the time slowly tick on. We go out for meals between games and performances and share hotel rooms to cut the costs. All of this time spent with other parents leads to deep and lasting friendships.
Sports parents know each other well enough to understand what our kids need—and what we need, too. We jump in to cover for each other when someone is absent, celebrating and supporting each other’s kids as if they were our own. We help each other when cars break down or roads are icy, when schedules get busy, when snacks are forgotten, and when money is tight.
Sports parents are united on common ground as we cheer for our team, and our kids, together. We build trust and camaraderie. This is especially true during those times when it’s impossible to do it all on our own. And there is nothing more wonderful than good friends. The kind that step up and take on anything that’s needed at any time.
Our teen athletes work hard and give it their all during their sports season.
And sports parents do, too.
While we watch our kids grow and learn so much through their sport, we embrace it all—the work, the fun, the wins, and the losses—together.