Sports Parenting

Kramer vs Kramer; Piano vs Cello

Our latest Guest Post is by Hernan Chousa, an invaluable resource for Tennis Parents around the world. While Hernan’s first language is NOT English, I think we can all relate to the stories and sentiments he shares. I hope you’ll Comment and share your stories as well!

There is a particular commitment grade when you perform any activity for yourself. When you are performing for others, stakes rise, and if it feels like there is a double check, I have to attend to my standards and ParentingAces ones simultaneously. So, for this article to come up with something new, you won’t find it anywhere. Many sites nowadays give a blueprint for how to behave about youth sports parenting. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the case when I raised my two kids, who were involved in tennis from a young age, and I only met their standards occasionally. Kids are unique and can bounce back from most unfair practices.

The story is about Julian, my elder one; he started playing at three years old, mainly because I was involved in tennis. I am a former tennis player, and even though I didn’t know it back then, kids copied everything from us. Well, he started playing in tournaments at seven and was successful from the beginning. This early win tends to confuse parents, and we thought we had the new Rogers Federer’s at home; many of you can relate. As all of you know—if you are Lisa’s follower, you have kids involved in tennis—the junior circuit is highly demanding, there are tournaments frequently, and tension appears between sports and school.

Let’s be honest; sports always have beaten school on my to-do list. Julian attended a pretty good one; 80% of the subjects were in English, although our first language is Spanish. Around nine years old, the institution made students choose a musical instrument to play—fantastic for players, to release tensions and have a side hobby— and Julian chose the cello. It looked like he wanted to be part of an orchestra rather than a rock band. It was his decision, and he started playing such an instrument at school. As I said before, the busy calendar started eroding Julian’s school grades, and according to his teacher, he had to level up in music. The problem was we didn’t have a cello at home, and I didn’t know anyone who had one, so Julian borrowed the school’s and brought it home on Fridays so he could practice on the weekends.

I will be honest with you, my heart broke the first Friday I fetched him from school with the cello—yes, it’s the big one. He was training, competing, attending school, doing homework, and keeping all the balls in the air. I thought this couldn’t last forever. So, at the beginning of the following year, I told his teacher that Julian would switch instruments. Instead of the cello, he will start with the piano. The professor was surprised and just said, ‘What a pity.’ So, I bought an electric keyboard and thought I had fixed the issue. Because we do that, we tend to fix things, but quick solutions deliver to end roads. Julian never learned to play the piano, although he took weekly classes. The exciting thing is his brother Sebastian is involved in music and seen as the musical family-gifted one, while Julian assumes he isn’t talented for it.

Well, as I said at the beginning, I didn’t have a blueprint for my kid’s journey, and if you are reading this, you have all the information at your hand with Lisa’s knowledge, and also, on the web, you have plenty of it. I don’t regret what I did wrong; even though I train parents to help them in their journey, I have to work on myself daily to improve my relationship with my kids. Every day is an opportunity to enhance the relationship.

It’s easier for me to tell you what I did wrong and what to change, but reread the story and figure it out by yourself. Learning by doing will improve your skills, and remember, no matter what happened yesterday, you have a new opportunity every day, so take advantage of it.

If you would like more information and details about my story, please check my latest book ParentShift; Lisa forwarded [wrote the Forward for] it. We are helping parents because we know firsthand how hard it is. I hope you enjoyed the story and can come up with yours in the comments.

Everyone has a story. Let’s go ahead and make it happen.


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