Jason loves sports. Me? Not so much. I like that he's busy with something healthy. I like that he enjoys the camaraderie of a team. What don't I like? The coach's expectation that sports top everything; that everyone in the family should put their lives on hold for the sport. Wrestling hasn't been so bad in this respect. Jason's wrestled for 4 years so far and is planning on wrestling again this year. He ran track last year, sort of. Due to his wrestling injury and the lack of exercise he did during that recovery, he quickly injured his knee and was unable to run for a bit. This fall he decided to try soccer for the first time. We got the spiel from the coach - please pick your kid up on time; coaches can't leave until all kids are gone; please get your child to the practices and games - they're on the schedule so you know when they're coming. Okay, sounds good, right? Wrong. First of all, practices and games change and it is expected that you will drop whatever you have planned for that time so that soccer can be attended to. The kids will do charity work - noble yes but again, not on the calendar at the beginning of the season so you know its coming but you don't know when....and its mandatory so if you had plans for that weekend that supposedly had no soccer commitments, you had better cancel them. As for the "please make sure you pick your kid up on time....", yes they want you there on time but the coaches will show absolutely no regard for your time. They decide practice should go an extra half hour then its going to go an extra half hour. Your other child has to be at dance? Too bad. If a child is doing poorly in a class and needs extra help, then you can pay for a tutor because your child should not be taking advantage of the extra help the teachers offer after school because that will interfere with practice. I do get that you make a commitment to sports but if my child's grades are suffering, that takes precedence. Soccer, wrestling, track are not going to help him pass the SATs. If he had to miss multiple practices, then one should rethink whether sports should be in the mix but one practice to figure out one area of a class that is confusing...yeah, being late to that one practice is worth it. Wrestling and track both start half an hour after school ends so that the kids can meet with teachers for that half hour. Soccer? Right when school ends.
I'm angry with the coach but I can't really say anything without Jason being penalized so I'm venting here...my blog....my safe place. Today Jason texted me that he'd be done with practice at 4 at Forges Field (local field a few miles from school; a bus takes them there). I told him I had to pick up Jess first and I got there about 4:10. No Jason. No kids from his team anywhere. Jess and I walk around the field and all we see is the girls soccer team. Go back to the truck and drive to the other entrance which he doesn't usually use but just in case....no kids. Again we go back. It's getting later; I'm starting to get freaked out. By this time its 4:30. Half an hour later than Jason told me he'd be. I don't know where my child is. I'm looking through my emails to find one of the soccer mom's phone numbers when he calls me at 4:40. My reply as I answer the phone...."Where the hell are you?!" He said he was running late and would be out in a middle. I asked again where he actually was and he said "the far field". Apparently there's another field in this complex of fields that can't be seen through the trees and which, in the entire time we've lived in Plymouth and the many activities Jason's had at Forges, he's never used so I didn't know it existed. I was livid. I am supposed to be sure I am there to pick my kid up on time but you keep him 40 minutes extra and don't have the kids let the parents know? And you're in an area you usually aren't in so anyone who doesn't know the field wouldn't know their kid is there? I am counting the days until the end of soccer.