Emy had her first soccer practice today. This is a day that I have been both excited for and nervous about for a long time. I have been so excited for her to try a team sport (something I never did) with all the stuff that comes with it- physical activity, team spirit, following a coach, coordination- all of it. I have been nervous because Emy is Emy. She flips out every time she so much as bumps her knee. She is a daydreamer. She would sit in front of the TV all day if I let her and she absolutely has to be right all the time. I was nervous because I did not know how all this would come together.
We tried and tried and succeeded in getting her onto an existing team where she has several friends from school. I thought this would be a good start for her and she would be able to ease into things a little better that way. Steve took her shopping for her gear last night. They had a good time and Emerson came home so excited about starting.
After rest time today I was getting her dressed and she could barely contain her excitement. It made my heart happy that she was truly ready for this adventure and that it was not something that Steve or I had pushed her into. On the way to practice, I gave her a pep talk. I explained that she was to listen to what the coach said and do whatever he asked. That she was to be kind to her new friends but to make sure to participate too. And most importantly I explained that if she fell down, she needed to be brave and get right back up.
We got to practice before anyone else and I think this was good for us. It gave Emy a chance to warm up to the area and run around with Ashton. Tonight was actually an optional practice with the real practice day being on Sundays so only half the girls came. None of which were Emy's friends.
When the coach was ready to start he called all the girls over and asked them to sit on their ball while they talked. They did introductions and talked about some "rules". The rest of practice was spent playing some cute games that basically got the girls to practice kicking the ball as much as possible.
Let me just stop right here and say how wrong I was about Emerson. She was totally in the mix the entire practice. She was running and kicking and going after her ball with such enthusiasm. Every time she would take a quick water break, she would not stay long citing that she "had to go" as if she did not want to miss anything the others were doing.
She listened to her coach. She talked to the other girls. She ran the entire time. She kicked the ball and made a real effort. And when she fell, I was able to get her back into practice.
I am one proud mama tonight. And my soccer-playing husband is just beside himself.
(yes, I now know that shin-guards go inside the socks. that is what happens when the soccer player of the house was not home to get emy dressed)