And it’s because we told her no.
It’s not the first time. And it won’t be the last.
No, she couldn’t start competing in gymnastics meets.
Here’s the thing, she really enjoys her hour and a half weekly gymnastics class. She’s getting stronger, learning new skills and likes hanging out with the other girls in her class. She’s flipping and bouncing and balancing and passe-ing and relave-ing like a boss.
BUT …. we’re not ready to start down the road of competitive gymnastics just yet.
Why? Because this is her first experience with any sport at all. And as much as she loves it, she’s constantly telling us she wants to try other things too. Soccer, basketball, lacrosse, tennis … you name it, she wants to try it.
I fully understand that when you join a team, there will be a commitment. And I also recognize that competitive (versus simply recreational) sports are taking on an increasingly younger demographic.
I feel like now is the time for her to explore what she likes. You know, in addition to paper fashion, cardboard cities, making messes in the kitchen, science experiments and scooter-ing every chance she gets.
Her devastation over not getting a leotard made me question whether or not we’d made the right decision. But I also felt fairly certain that her devastation was over the sparkly leotard and NOT over competing. So I asked her.
I asked if she would be happy if they let her compete even though she wouldn’t have the team leotard. She said she wasn’t sure but she didn’t think so. Then I asked if she would be happy if she could have the leotard but not compete. And she said that would make her VERY happy.
That’s what I thought. Her only commitment so far is to the fashion 😉
She’s dealing with the disappointment, and we’ll continue with the once a week gymnastics classes as long as she likes. But she’s also super stoked to be starting tennis lessons in a few weeks. And in the meantime, she’s been showing us that maybe we should be looking for a rec lacrosse team too …
And I won’t push her into something just because it’s what I did growing up. Sure, it would be easier if she played a sport that I played because I know/understand the sport, but that seems like the wrong way to make choices.
After all, I can assure you that I never made a paper dress as a kid. And learning how to do new things together has been way more fun for both of us.