Monday, April 29, 2013

Does The Calendar rule your life, too?

Our life is controlled by The Calendar.

This is both a good and a bad thing.

It's good in that The Calendar, by which I mean the large "Mom's Plan-It Calendar" hanging on our refrigerator, is an invaluable tool in helping us organize our life.

I always say, "If it's not on on The Calendar, it doesn't exist." If you want a ride, if you want to make sure the family attends your event, if you simply want to remind yourself, write it on The Calendar.

At the same, it's a bad thing because, well, since when did we surrender control of our schedules to a sheaf of laminated paper?

Since about three kids ago, I would say.

You people with children know what I'm talking about. Especially if that child is school-aged and/or involved in a lot of activities. Sports, music, Scouts, whatever. They all involve practices, meetings and games, and they all seem to happen at once.

You people with multiple children are already shaking your heads and saying, "I hear ya, brother."

As I type this, our family has, over the next four hours, a track practice (Chloe), a track meet (Jared), a soccer game (Jack), and another soccer game (Melanie).

I coach both Jack's and Melanie's teams.

Do you see the problem there?

This is not the first nor the last time this will happen. And I don't ask for pity because we brought this on ourselves.

But that doesn't make it any more fun.

If you wonder how I made the choice to coach Mel's game and not Jack's, it came down to the relative "importance" of their games.

I put importance in quotes because it's kids soccer. No game, no practice is anywhere really close to "important."

Their overall experience and what they take away from participating in organized team sports: That's important. Not a game. Not the final score.

But when you compare the two, I selfishly picked Melanie's game to attend because we're playing our intra-city rival tonight. Our opponents are a great bunch of girls with a great coach, but when we play each other, nobody holds back. It's actually a lot of fun, and win or lose, all the girls involved get something out of it.

So that's what I chose.

But I never like to choose at all. And I'm actually surprised how often I don't have to choose. With five kids (even with one in college), the potential for Event Conflict is enormous. Yet the schedules tend to balance out, for the most part.

Still, activities and events leave us very little down time. When we can, we all like to just stay at home and do whatever we want. Everyone in the family appreciates that.

But when we're "free," other people expect that's a good time for us to get together. And we really should, but those rare free nights are the nights when we rest and recharge.

Again, we made the choice in all this. I know that. But I'm still going to whine because it's my blog.

Except that I'm already late for a soccer game and I have to go...

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