Aiden is playing soccer for the first time this year. We debated this summer on what to do with him over the fall: fall tee-ball with the same team he played on in the spring, soccer, or no team sport and just let him continue in tae kwon do. After some deliberation, we thought Aiden would enjoy the fast pace of soccer, so we temporarily froze his tae kwon do progress, with the intent that he'll return after the season, and enrolled him on the local city team.
The first few practices were...interesting. He loved the constant movement, he loved kicking the ball, but he cried when he slid in some mud and got dirty, and he threw a couple of tantrums when his teammates kicked the ball in the goal and he didn't. Uh oh, we thought, it is going to be a LONG season.
Boy, were we wrong. After a couple of 'discussions' about team work, plenty of reassurance that getting muddy and dirty is just part of soccer, and stories of Mommy's days in soccer that involved sucking bugs down your throat while running and falling face first in the mud (he thought these were hilarious), his attitude toward soccer changed. His first game, he played really well, and although he was disappointed he didn't make any goals, he enjoyed himself and got a better understanding of the game. Second game, he made a couple of goals and started to get the idea of playing WITH his teammates and not against them. This last game, he made 3 goals, several assists with his teammates, and although the league doesn't keep score at this age group, let's just say that the ball never went near the other team's goal.
Aiden and his teammates have really started to understand the game and have actually started playing together. They have a great time out there, they are full of crazy antics on the sidelines, and he can't leave the field without giving his teammates big hugs goodbye. It has been so fun to watch him play and see him dance with glee when he or one of his teammates makes a goal. I'm actually looking forward to his next game--I love watching him play.