Leotards and hockey sticks?

I got to have a movie night sleepover at my friends Dhiya and Simiya’s house last night and I got to play all day today with my best friends Anna and Grace!

He said

Out of the blue Thursday night while taking Emelia with me to get my skates sharpened and to pick up some sock and stick tape that I needed for my much-loved Friday morning weekly hockey, Emelia dropped on me that the twins were gonna play hockey next fall and she wanted to, too. How we arrived at our night out was I had the day off so I had already been to the gym earlier in the day, so to give Danielle a much easier time getting her evening workout done, we sent her off to the gym while we took on Daddy’s hockey errands. As much as we love that Emelia now loves working out at the gym, her attention span for either of our length of workout is slim, at best. We (I) thought it made sense to do something else, and give Danielle some me time.

So back to the hockey bomb that landed in my lap… Anyone who knows me, knows that I love hockey. I love watching it, but even more so, I love playing it. It’s something that has been part of my life consistently since about Grade 5 or 6. Naturally one might think that I would be all over getting her out on the ice and involved in the game. But, for someone who has zero interest in hockey all of her ten years on this planet, my skepticism in her interest in the game was on high alert. She definitely understands that is something that I have a big place in my life for, but for her, the interest has always been borne out of curiosity in connecting with me and my interests — What team do you want to win, Daddy? — that sort of stuff.

I’d be lying if I said that a little part of my heart didn’t break when she told me that she thought she might want to play hockey more than she wanted to play gymnastics as we discussed the reality that she wouldn’t be able to do both likely based on the weekly commitment necessary. Now before you scratch your head on that one, I need you to appreciate just how much we’ve seen Emelia flourish and develop in her short time with gymnastics. The shy girl who was comfortable to stay back rather than try first is gone and in her place is this confident and courageous girl that has improved by leaps and bounds and wants to go first. And we’ve seen her life revolve around gymnastics for the past year, and we’ve seen her move from someone who just enjoyed doing it, to someone who is becoming really good at it.

So as much as I would  love for her and I have that one thing that we both do and can relate to, and maybe even play together, I also know her well enough to know the things that she really wants to do because they are something she connects with versus the things that she wants to do, that she can just have more time with her besties, the twins. All this became more evident when we started sweating the details like how we wouldn’t be able to guarantee that they would be on the same team and that she wouldn’t be able to do both at the same as gymnastics would need three nights a week and hockey would need two nights minimum. And the more we explained this to her, the more it registered with her, she would have to decide. After we picked her up from her gymnastics practice on Friday night, she told me that she’d like to stay in gymnastics, but maybe that she and I could play hockey together for fun. We both decided that would be more than okay.

It’s so funny as I think about this, because before having a kid if you asked me if I could have one who wanted to play hockey how I felt about that, I probably would have told you I would give it up and any other extras for me so that my child could play. But, now that I have Emelia and see who she is – especially through the confidence and identity she has forged on her, I want for her to have this thing for as long as she still enjoys it and gets her own identity from it. It’s just hard to explain that part to a ten year old girl and for her to see the change it’s made in her. But thankfully for now it looks like that doesn’t need to happen as the conversation has yet to come up again.

This week upcoming is March Break for Emelia which makes her excited on a couple of reasons: one, no school; two, she gets to see her cousins and Aunt Linda and Uncle David. They’re coming down to spend some of their break with the family, so that is great. But the second half of March Break brings Danielle and I a couple of concerts too! We get to be grownups Wednesday night heading down to Toronto to see Wilco at Massey Hall. And then on Saturday night we all have tickets to see our friend Jenn Grant play at the Aeolian Hall here in London. That’s the perfect kind of week to be looking forward to!


She said

In the scheme of our schedules this past week was actually pretty quiet, which is great because this upcoming week is busy from start to finish. This week the focus for Emelia this week was to wrap a few tests and projects at school to get ready for the school break.

The week for Emelia was all about gymnastic practices and getting ready for her competition that is only two weeks away. She has worked so hard on her routines and we could not be prouder. As John said in his part what we have seen gymnastics give Emelia has made every penny worth it. Two or three years ago Emelia would barely talk to anyone outside her closest friends and some adults, now she is the little ham and the leader in her group. The confidence that this sport has given her has made all of us so incredibly happy.

Now with this confidence and her connection with her friends means she wants to try everything, and as much as we would love for her to try everything it is not at all possible. With her success and hard work this past year in training I wouldn’t be surprised if she moves up a level in her gymnastics. What this means is another full day of training, so we are at 3 days a week with gymnastics. This week she came to us saying she wanted to try hockey. And yes the idea she wanted to take on another sport made us very proud it was instantly anchored with how the hell does this even work? There is no way it can, gymnastics already takes 3 nights a week, and we have no say on what those three nights will look like. Through all the tears although she isn’t happy she has very reluctantly accepted that there is no way she can do both – her parents cannot afford it and there is simply not enough days in the week. Our little athlete wants to do it all and that makes us so proud!

After all that we finally got to the weekend. All week Emelia was looking forward to Saturday – and so was I. About 2 weeks ago I had been chatting with one of my closest friends, Komal and we set a date to get together so the girls could play and we could hang out. As soon as Dhiya found out Emelia was coming over for a playdate she instantly asked if Emelia could sleep over. So our day was set. We arrived in the early afternoon and the girls spent the rest of the day playing while Komal and I caught up. It was exactly what we all needed after a long winter – time with friends! The day flew by and I finally left as John was getting off work.

The morning came far too fast and our day today was filled again. I had to spend the morning prepping the house for a daycare interview. Before I had the interview I popped over to the Glavin’s to get Emelia and come home. Emelia went off to her best friends for a play while I met up with my new daycare family. Once the interview was over the twins and Emelia came over here to spend the afternoon. I got a few more things done and then the girls hatched a plan to go to family swim at the local Y. We packed all the girls up and we met at the Y.

The day was filled from start to finish but it was filled with lots of fun with friends and that is always amazing!

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