I always wondered what it meant to be a soccer mom. I have heard the phrase thrown around all my life and saw images of a zillion kids jumping out of a mini-van with their soccer balls in hand.
I have never played soccer a day in my life and have no previous knowledge of how the game of soccer works. People who watch professional soccer are for the most part crazy about the sport. My friends Nicola and Paul from South Africa are a couple of those crazy soccer fans and every year they ask me if I am watching the World Cup and every year I say, “do you still not know that we do not watch soccer?” They are quietly in disbelief. I can almost feel their disdain at my admission through the internet waves in which we are communicating.
So, now Ava is playing soccer for the third year and I am gaining interest in the sport; mainly because parent’s love watching their kids do anything in the world. Here is how Ava’s soccer career has played out thus far:
Year 1: an embarrassment. Ava spent more time twirling her hair and trimming the grass with her fingers than actually paying attention to the ball. It was painful to watch.
Year 2: an improvement. Ava still spent some time spacing off and forgetting that she was on the soccer field as part of a team and their job was to kick the soccer ball into the goal, but there were surprises along the way. The biggest and best surprise of all was when Ava took the ball from her opponent and dribbled it all the way down the field and kicked it straight into goal. No joke, people I have never seen in my life still come up to me and say “oh, you are Ava’s mom? I still remember that goal she made the last game of the season!” Perhaps it was so magnificent not only because it was a great execution of a goal, but because this little tiny red head who looked like she would rather be anywhere in the whole world than on the soccer field got some major unexpected chutzpah and dominated for a minute. Here is the link of the goal:
Year 3: Kick-ass. Let me just say that watching Ava play soccer is the highlight of Chris and my week. She has some good skills and very quick on the field. Who knew?
So, I think as of recently I am finally understanding what it means to be a soccer mom. We arrive at Ava’s games in my mini-van filled with children and unload our Costco fold out rolling cart that houses many soccer balls of different colors and shapes, snack and folding chairs. We all proceed to the field where we set up base camp and get ready to watch some soccer!
And when Ava gets the ball I lose all control of myself. I scream and yell and can’t see or hear anything else going on around me. When Ava makes a goal, forget about it, that is when I truly embarrass myself. Then along with screaming and yelling I add jumping up and down like a fool into the mix. My friend Chandra said that I wasn’t making a fool of myself but my response to that is two-fold: 1. she is too kind. 2. her daughter was playing on the opposite field and so she may have missed my main moments of foolish soccer mom behavior.
After one goal I was screaming and yelling and jumping up and down (I think I even was holding one of the triplets at the time) and I saw Ava look over at me with a perplexed expression as if to say “I have never seen my mom act like that before.”
So, I must officially be a soccer mom. I think I may fit all the proper criteria. I love watching Ava play soccer. I love to see her get in the game and really try hard to do a good job. For a moment I may have even indulged thoughts of Ava at the World Cup ripping her T-shirt off and falling to her knees after a game winning goal. Then, after all of the excitement of the game dies down, I realize it is just an 8 and under girls soccer scrimmage for an hour on a Saturday morning in September. This is not the World Cup.
Chris made another video with his favorite shots from two games ago:
Until next time, the mothership is signing off.