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What Football Has Taught Me About Family

Yes, football and being a football family requires physical demands and emotional commitments from everyone involved. There are so many lonely dinners and difficult bath times. There are so many rushed labor-day cookouts and daddy-less trick-or-treats. There are so many tears from kids who miss their daddies -- and occasionally from mamas missing them too. Because there may not be crying in baseball, but believe me, there is crying in football. A lot of crying.

But most of those tears are the good kind.

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Dear Veteran's Coach's Wive Series

Dear Veteran Coach’s Wife: How Do You Handle Young Kids During the Season?

It’s Tuesday, and we’re answering another question in our Veteran Coach’s Wife series.

QUESTION FROM NEWBIE WIFE

How do you manage your first football season as a new mom? I know I’ll basically be a single parent, especially with the school he’s at is over an hour away which means at least an extra two hours he’s away. Just feeling anxious about it all. 

ANSWERS FROM VETERAN COACHES WIVES

Dear New Mama,

First of all, you got this. Pioneer women ran a household of kids by themselves with no electricity, indoor plumbing, and God forbid no formula or disposable diapers while their husbands worked 18 hours a day… so in comparison, we got it good!

By no means are coaches’ wives single mothers; we are married to the hardest working men who work their butts off every day to provide for their families. But I think you’re absolutely right to mentally prepare to handle so much of the day-to-day like you’re a single mom because it will make you strong and help you to realize you can tackle anything by yourself. 

Now some coaching mommas will disagree with what I’m about to say & to each his own, you’ll find out what works for your family but for me, I say “load up the kids and go!” We handle football season by attending everything we can: practice, games, social events you name it. The absolute best part of being a coaching family is watching your kids immerse themselves in the program. Your child will live for seeing Dad on the sidelines and the older they get it’s so fun to see them develop relationships with the other coaches and the players. 

The newborn football season is the best, other wives will volunteer to hold your baby while you get to enjoy the game! You’ll spend the second season chasing the baby all around. I would much rather drive two kids all around the state then sit at home for hours waiting on Dad to come home. Plus, kids tend to sleep in a moving car and you’ll appreciate the silence. 

My last piece of advice would be to stay plugged into the community we find in Friday Night Wives. Every day we see thousands of women across the country who are killing it as coaching wives and mommas. If they can do it, so can we!

 

You can do this!

Jessica

 

Dear New Mama,

First, Congratulations! You’re already doing an amazing job. The thing you may already know about kids is that you can’t think and plan too far in advance. If you do, they tend to catch on and try to outmaneuver your plans. 😉  Just kidding….sort of.

In all seriousness, I understand the tension you’re experiencing as you anticipate all that this season might hold. But you don’t know what will happen. You may find that your child is an amazing sleeper and the drive to and from games is the best thing for him or her. You may discover that a routine that really works for everyone most days and the weeks aren’t as stressful as you have heard from other wives they can be. 

On the other hand, you may need to start looking for a mother’s helper in the form of a young teen who can come watch the baby while you get a few things done around the house. 

Remember that the season is only a portion of your calendar and it’s important to take each week independently with little ones regardless of whether your husband is present or working far from home. Kids rapidly change their preferences when they are young and we must stay adaptable as they are growing. 

Bookmark this post, To the Young Mama in the Middle of the Season, and remember you’ve got a whole tribe of women who are ready to cheer you on when you have a bad day. I say when because you will have them. We all do. No one is perfect. But having a bad day doesn’t require you to have a bad season.

From One Whose Been There,

Beth

 

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From the Coach’s Kid’s Mom—He’s Waited a Lifetime for This. Please, Show Grace.

They’ve eaten hundreds of meals from a concession stand or from a drive-thru after cheering for the boys of the communities they’ve been a part of, while their dad drives the team bus home.

They’ve eaten supper at the table alone with mom, while dad counseled or drove a player home because, in that moment, that player's needs were greater than their own.

My boys have grown up, waiting for the moment they could participate.

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I’m a Mom and a Coach’s Wife—and I’m Still Recovering from Football Season

What can I do instead of clouding my judgment with more mental clutter and endless to do lists? I can breathe. Have grace. Pray, love and be present. If it takes me 4 months to get my house in order following the season, then let it be. It is easier said than done, I know.

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