March 12, 2010
After my husband read today’s slice, he said, “It reminds me of my favorite quote when I used to play sports:”
Winning isn’t everything. It is the only thing. —Vince Lombardi
After school Stephanie and I holed up in the studio for a little while. She was working on making a card for her kindergarten teacher; I was creating a mini-album. A comfortable silence had settled around us. The peace of creating permeated the air. As a mom, it is these moments I crave. Moments carved out of the day which invite conversation. I didn’t have to wait long for Steph to break the silence.
“I can hardly wait for softball to start,” she said as she finished cutting her glitter paper.
“Yeah, I’m looking forward to it too. What makes you excited?”
“I can’t wait to win.” I looked up at her. She continued working, serious about her thoughts.
“Really? You like to win, eh?”
“Oh yeah. I loveto win. That’s why I want to play sports. So I can win.” I marvel at her strong personality and her determination. She continues to create her card. “It makes me really frustrated when I don’t win. That’s why I’m glad the snow is gone. I need to practice hitting and catching and throwing. That way softball will be fun, because my team will win.”
I smile, thinking how opposite her attitude toward winning is from mine. “You want to know something Steph?”
She stopped drawing and looked up. “Sure.”
“When I used to play sports, I didn’t really care much about winning. It was just fun to play.”
Steph stared at me, puzzled. “I don’t understand that at all, Mom. I don’t think I would have liked you on my team.”
Laughing, I hugged her. “No, you probably wouldn’t. I’m glad you like to win, though. It’ll help you be a good athlete.”
She looked up at me with serious blue eyes. “And practice. Practice will help. You have to practice if you want to win.”
Clearly she’s been talking to her dad, who shares her belief that you play sports to win. I just smiled at her. Although I’ll never understand her drive to win, I will always love watching how this bit of her personality helps her grow into the person she will become.