soccer_ball

Remember the 2005 Will Ferrell flick Kicking and Screaming? The team was just the worst, but the boys didn’t seem too concerned. Eventually, the coach (Ferrell) decides he is sick of losing and recruits a few skilled Italians to join the team and things turn around. The Tigers start winning …

Well, I’m in the need of a few Italians for my daughter’s team.

This season, my little girl is on the all-time worst team, and it’s killing me. Each weekend, we lug our gear out to the sidelines. I braid her hair and get the cleats on. We fill up the water bottles and bring the snacks. And each weekend, we get slaughtered. We lose 7-0, 9-0, 11-0. It’s just no fun. The young group of five-year-olds, thankfully, seem oblivious. But still, it would be nice to score a few goals.

Still, the pain goes beyond the outrageous losses. The parents on this team cruise up to the game one minute before game time. They spend more time scrolling their phones than scanning the field. They don’t jump up to do a team tunnel. They don’t volunteer to help stripe the fields or take down the nets.

When their daughters whine to come off, they’ll leave the field at halftime. They don’t call to say they’ll miss a practice.

My husband, the ever-willing volunteer and soccer enthusiast, is the coach, and even his patience is wearing thin.

Me? I’m ultra-competitive, so this weekly butt-kicking is beyond humbling. Yes, I imagine my childish rant about five-year-old soccer sounds crazy, but I’m frustrated on so many levels.

In a season where our family of five is so busy, this experience feels like a waste of time, bringing little joy. It’s not the losing that bugs me as much as the lack of support and participation. Not only did my husband draw a very weak team, but he drew a cast of individuals who won’t help, show up on time or even cheer on the sidelines.

I’m certain there is a lesson folded into this very painful season, but at the moment, I’m ready to call it quits and enjoy a leisure-filled weekend, minus the soccer massacre. In a few months, we’ll likely laugh at this experience. But right now, it’s too soon. I’m kicking and screaming … and recruiting Italians (or mini Mia Hamms). I have no shame.

Has your child ever been on an absolute awful team? 

Give me some laughs and share your experiences. Misery loves company.

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