It is that simple, really. But why can’t we do it?
My children row. I have one on the modified team and one on JV. Crew is a difficult sport that requires a great deal of both mental and physical endurance. I myself have never rowed so my comments are really more like observations.
Both my children also play basketball. Competitive. Aggressive and although each player is part of the team on the whole, they still each play a game of their own with stats of their own. Crew is not. You are all in one boat, as one team, in sync…win or lose. Unless you row a single, you are tied at the hip. Makes for a good bond, and I have witnessed that to be true.
Jack is more of a thinker, deeper and methodical. He is more patient and tolerates the pain and blisters without complaint. He gets the Zen.
Amelia is hyper and quick and impatient and gets frustrated and mad at herself for her perceived inabilities. (Wonder where she gets that from). Well one day she was frustrated while rowing and could not get some part of the sweep or stroke and her coach told her to ‘just feel the Zen of the boat”. Close your eyes and feel the rhythm, the water and the boat’s movements. She did, and she got it. Simple.
I could spend many blog posts comparing and contrasting the various sports team environments that my children have participated in. I am happy they have experienced the diversity. I have to say to the crew people though- I like how you think…kind of a no worries mindset. So it is not an issue when you drop your shorts in the parking revealing only spandex; or when you pull out an old banana or apple that has been hanging around and you need a boost; not even when you park your cars at pick up time haphazardly in the lot or that your watches are set to ‘crew time’ not Zulu time. You are bringing the Zen to us. Once basketball starts, I will try to keep that feeling when my kids hit the hardwood with a thump or a foul is not called on a cheap shot. Holding my breath with seconds on the clock in a sweaty gym…where is my Zen?
This past week we, as a family, have been dealing with some issues that are causing stress. This time of year is hard for kids with back to school, looming SAT/ACT tests, sports tryouts etc. We are and spending some time making popcorn, watching America’s Got Talent and basically feeling the Zen. Something we let slip a bit this summer that we need to get back.
I find when I am stressed, Chip gets stressed and that falls onto the kids, even when we try to keep it from them. So I am going to try to find and feel the Zen in my life. I think tomorrow morning I will walk Izzy a little bit slower; savor the time with friends a little bit deeper; and when I make those middle of the night bed checks, I think I will kiss my kid’s cheeks a little bit longer.