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Maybe I am wrong, but I don't remember life being so complicated when I was in middle school.

Everything is so competitive now.  Maybe it was back then and I just didn't realize it.

Sarah Kate started playing city league softball a couple of weeks ago.   We've been encouraged to get her private batting lessons.
When I was in third grade I started playing softball and I just did it for fun!  No stress at all, as far as I can remember!  I just played.  I wasn't very good, but I liked it! Ha!

Emily started band this year!  Before school started, I got a letter from the school district strongly encouraging "your band student to take instrument lessons."  WHAT?  I bought into it and got Emily private clarinet lessons (which she really enjoys)!
But, what happened to learning as you go?  I never thought about taking private trumpet lessons when I started band.

It seems like most parents are striving for their child to be THE BEST.  I guess that's a good thing, but I think its hard on the family!    I think kids are so over-committed these days!  My girls are longing for an afternoon that we can just be at home.  Our family is just all over the place most every night.

Next year, I'm saying NO to being so busy and YES to quality time as a family.


labride said…
Yes to this! We have a 3 year old and one on the way so we aren't there yet. However, just last night my husband and I were having a conversation about this topic. I'm totally with you on it, he doesn't agree with me at all. I just don't like the idea of their lives being booked up and not having a moment of free time. Where we live it's super popular to take everything under the sun, have private lessons, and only eat fast food in the car because no one gets home until 9 at night. It's too much for me.
Tara G. said…
Preach! And, whoa, the pressure when we set boundaries!
Kelly said…
I couldn't agree more and my kiddo is only 3. I've said no to so much this far and I feel like were missing out but I'm trying to cherish the time at home with our family and neighbors.
Maggie said…
Yes! Yes! Yes! My 5 year old is playing baseball this year and there are so many parents that are so afraid to see their kids fail . It's really sad. Of course everyone wants their kids to be the best but at what cost. Is giving up time as a family worth it? Im not convinced it is. But I'm afraid I'm in the minority.
Mary said…
It keeps getting even more complicated and intense as they get older compared to when we were young. My girls are 17 and 21. Even if things are “good” too much of a good thing is bad. In high school we have run into intense pressure for doing majority AP and DE classes etc. Building resumes already in high school that show leadership, volunteering, various clubs, high GPA. I think my first resume was my senior year of college looking for an actual elementary teaching position! I have found it best to swim upstream and say no to the quantity and ground into their hearts and minds God loves them and is sovereign and has a plan for their life. And we can trust Him! Oh, the weight that takes off all our hearts and enables us to say no to all the extreme loading down!
Tracy said…
I couldn't agree more with this! It's just too much sometimes. And it's okay if your kid ISN'T the BEST! Sometimes they'll be the best, other times they won't. And it's okay!
Kim K said…
Kellie said…
I absolutely agree! Everything is so competitive now. I regularly see kids wearing braces, having surgeries on ligaments and joints etc. because they have injured them playing sports. It is insane the about of pressure kids have on them now. I am with you!
Farm Girl said…
I have two daughters, 15 and 9. My kids aren't going to the Olympics and getting a full ride to Yale. They have cried many tears by not getting the top award or winning a game. Just like I came in second to a job promotion. Second hurts. But I lived to tell about it. They are encouraged to try their best, work hard, stand up for their beliefs and value, find a balance but be realistic. We are NOT perfect! I fail at meeting some expectation I set for myself almost daily. When my kids show empathy to people and situations around them without being forced to do so, I feel like they have won the gold. I think life is about relationships.
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