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This Sunday, thousands of soccer moms will be
celebrating their Mother's Days exactly where they spend most of their spring
(and fall): at the soccer field. Though we live in a day and age where many
dads are just as involved as moms in all the driving, washing, cheering, cleaning
and traveling of being a soccer parent, dads typically don't have to share
Father's Day with soccer.
That's why you should give your soccer
mom an extra-special celebration this Sunday.
Don't call her "soccer mom"
Some moms relish the "soccer mom" title. If that's
your mom, then call her "soccer mom" all Mother's Day long. Let her wear that
badge with pride.
But for the rest of us, please spare us the shame of
our minivans, our collapsible chairs, our closets full of balls and cleats and
uniforms. We're having a hard time adjusting to the whole "soccer mom" thing.
And that's mostly because we're having a hard time
adjusting to the fact that we're becoming our own (soccer) mothers.
Play your best-ish
Most soccer moms know that their kids aren't going to win
every game. They know that their kids aren't always going to be the best player
on the team, and they even know that their kids aren't going to play their own personal
best at every game.
But do you know what most soccer moms love more than
seeing their kids win or play their very best? Seeing them build their
confidence and athleticism. Watching them develop a bond with their teammates. Looking
on as their kids face their fears with courage, boldness and, sometimes, vulnerability.
We're perfectly satisfied seeing our kids play
their best-ish. For the most part, we just love to watch our kids play soccer—even
if we sometimes complain about rainy, 9 a.m. tournaments.
Does she fill your water bottle before every game? You
can do it on Mother's Day. (And probably every game and practice thereafter.)
Is she driving you to one of those unfathomably early
games? Scrounge up some money and buy her a coffee.
Will she spend her Mother's Day at a soccer game? Take
her out for lunch or dinner afterward.
Does she want to take a picture of you? Smile nicely,
don't make a funny face and just oblige her for this once. She's trying to
preserve a happy memory in both of your lives.
Fill a giant water bottle with mimosas so she can sip and celebrate from
Of course, I would never actually suggest that anyone
do this because it's probably illegal (and mildly inappropriate). I would also
never bring plastic cups to a soccer tournament so that I could share my jug of
Mother's Day mimosas with my fellow soccer moms. And I would never, ever raise
my illegal, inappropriate alcoholic beverage and toast all of us moms for
sticking out the blazing sun, the bone-chilling rain and the shoe-drenching
grass just so that we can watch our kids play soccer for approximately 258
weekends out of every year.
Say "thank you"
If she's your biggest cheerleader, say "thank you."
If she knows the difference between a goal kick and a
corner kick, say "thank you."
If she's ever brought snacks for the team—or better
yet, if she organizes the snack sign-up sheet for the team—say "thank you."
If she drives you and your teammates to practices and
games, say "thank you."
If she drives you and your teammates to practice and
games and she isn't your own mother, still say "thank you."
If she's the only person in your house who's brave
enough to get near the godawful stank of your cleats and shin guards, say