I have to preface the description of his practice by telling you how I dreamed it would be. I was so excited when I signed onto his team webpage. I quickly added photos of him, and memorized all the practice/game days. The Jumping Bugs was his team, and I knew that he would be great! I literally visioned that he would walk right up to his team, join in the fun, all the kids would be beginners, and that Kinlee and I would sit happily on the sidelines at practice. I planned to take loads of pictures, and to truly take in his first practice....take it in I did.
First of all when we arrived at practice I did not know where to go. On the right side of the gym there was a team of kids that looked to be 7 or 8 playing like hardcore basketball. On the left side there was a team of kids that all looked to be 4/5. I wasn't sure if that was Caleb's team but it was. So I sent my little three year old out to meet his team, and he immediately freaked. Anyone who knows Caleb knows that he is a person who has to warm up to situations. He will not just run into anything, so I had to sit with him while the coach did introductions. The coach then threw a curve ball at us and asked for a mom or dad to come out to accompany their child for drills. Guess who was the only mom on the court? Yep...this girl. Nick had to work late and couldn't make it, and we both had no idea that it would be parent involved. So instead of a dad who loves sports Caleb got a sport illiterate mama, with a baby on her hip....yea that was me.
So, I tried to internally give myself a pep talk "You can do this Sarah, it won't be that hard, I mean it is preschool basketball after all". Yea...preschool basketball.....about that. I swear every other kid on his team knew how to dribble, run while dribbling, and shoot the basketball. My kid.....well he decided the basketball was a soccer ball and decided that he was going to kick it instead. He literally refused to pick up the basketball the first 20 minutes of practice. So I was the mom that was trying everything I could think of to encourage him to pick it up, all while he kicked it and called it a soccer ball. The dads next to me were saying things like, "Dribble while you turn, set up your shot etc". I felt so out of place....
Finally Caleb decided that the ball was indeed a basketball and started "dribbling". I am sorry, I may be sports illiterate but I didn't know that dribbling skills were common among preschool kids. I literally thought that he would walk into practice, and that all the kids would be learning to dribble. I was wrong. Like I stated before all the other kids could dribble. My son, can dribble once or twice, and then the ball falls and rolls away from him. He runs, falls on the ground to catch it, does and couple rolls, runs back only to repeat the process again. If you remember back to the beginning of this post, there was another large team playing on the other side of the court. Caleb's ball kept rolling into their game, and Mckinlee would then throw her ball into their side as well because she saw Caleb do it. Yea, I gave Kinlee a ball to keep her happy. So, picture me. I'm the mom in ugg boots, skinny jeans, and dress coat running from one side of the court to another wrangling my children, because I did not know that practice was parent involved. I was literally a show I am sure for the other moms blissfully talking in the stands......
So, if that was not enough the coach decided that since the team was so skilled he was going to up the practice. He made a square out of four cones, and told the kids that they were going to work on "controlling the ball". His rule
***Dribble inside the 4 cones, and work on controlling the ball. If the ball starts rolling or goes outside the 4 cones you are out*****
Aca-scuseme? I thought this was a PRESCHOOL team. Made up of PRESCHOOL kids. So needless to say within 2 seconds my sons ball was out of bounds and rolling to the other side of the court, followed by my daughters ball. Fortunately for us the coach did not enforce the out rule. Maybe he saw the dirty look I gave him, or maybe he had pity on the poor oblivious mother trying to wrangle 2 children, and pretend that she knew something about basketball.
The kids then practiced shooting. Caleb was fine with Kinlee and I going to the stands for this part THANK GOD. However, Kinlee then decided she wanted a snack, and proceeded to drop it all over the gym floor, and scream when I would not give it back to her because it was dirty. Caleb then proceeded to not take a turn shooting. He was super sweet and told every one they could go before him, but the truth is he needed to practice. Every other kid on his team made at least one shot, all while their dads called instructions from the sidelines. Me, I sat there and wanted to cry.
So far preschool basketball has been an interesting experience. Nick is now being forced by me to instruct Caleb daily on dribbling, shooting, running etc, and will be present for EVERY basketball practice from here on out. I was so unaware that before attending basketball practice, a toddler was required to actually have a knowledge of how to play.....I so was not made to have boys........
The smallest and youngest on the team