A “Behind the Scenes” look at tennis camp…Day one.
I was excited for our boys to have their first day of tennis camp. I grew up playing tennis as a child with my dad, and I started at age 4 years. I love that my dad and I share so many wonderful memories around hours spent on the tennis court. So, when this summer rolled around, I checked into tennis lessons for our boys. There are wonderful tennis programs available at community centers around the United States. The USTA (United States Tennis Association) offers child memberships and beginner lessons with special balls even geared to the age/ability of children. Our community center offers week long tennis day camp for kids ages 4-12 years.
Perfect…our boys are 7 and 4 years…they can go together! I registered them back in May, and July finally rolled around. Yesterday, I packed their gear, snapped a few pictures, and went off to my morning of freedom. Of course the youngest one was a bit camera shy, but they were both excited. A few hours later I got a call from one of the directors at camp…
“Bryan isn’t happy. He’s been crying, not participating, and he has been held for the last hour or so by one of our coaches. Are you able to come get him early?”
Dressed nicely in a sundress, I had just pulled up to a local BBQ restaurant to have a lunch date with my husband. I told the director, that “Yes, I’m close, I can be there soon.” My husband and I got take out orders, and my husband warmly reminded me: “We decided to add that character to our family.” This is a joke from a television sitcom. It is not joke though that indeed God creates each “character” to be unique. Parenting our sons has taught me how to find flexibility.
Flexibility in knowing that we have one son who is an extrovert and the other an introvert. The extrovert is eager to smile for the camera. The introvert is hiding under his hat…head down, thumb in his mouth. The extrovert thrives in new situations, and the introvert needs more hand holding. Our extrovert goes with the flow in new settings, and our introvert prefers to play in the comfort of home with family not new friends.
I’m thankful that we do have a lot of time to spend in the comfort of home. I can be flexible to the mood and energy level of the individuals (including me). If someone is feeling a little tired we can watch a kid show. If we have some energy to burn we can all go swimming or play outside. Flexibility comes in creating the day around the kids sometimes. They do dictate what we do and when we do it. Following our child’s lead is so critical. When we slow down and speed up to their pace we discover blessings. Finding flexibility in the fact that our kids are still young, variable, and need grace for the journey as they figure out the world around them…one day at a time.
Thank you for each day. Help us to greet new situations with peace knowing that you are with us. Give us courage to face new situations and the willingness to remain flexible when things do not go according to plan. Help us to remain flexible in our faith journey and accept that the ball does not always bounce in our favor.