I have always had a two activity per child rule for after school programs. Any more than two activities per child per week, and things get a little chaotic around our house. This has been an easy rule to stand by and uncomplicated to manage because Bella & Olivia have both enjoyed the same activities for the last several years.
Things are different this school year…
Bella and Olivia are figuring out who they are and what they love to do as individuals, which means their interests are expanding and they will not be going to the same places at the same time anymore. As they are getting older, they are capable of taking on a little more.
I don’t want to over schedule them, but I want to give them the opportunity to follow their individual interests. Bella wants to ride horses, dance, play piano, and take Spanish lessons. Olivia wants to play soccer, dance, and have lots of play dates. I’m not pushing them into anything. They are begging me to let them participate in all these activities.
Yesterday I told my friend, Karen, that I was heading into town to take my oldest daughter, Bella, to Nutcracker try outs. (This is in addition to the dance classes she is already taking.)
Karen said, “You do realize that if Bella makes it, your life will be even more crazy!”
What is wrong with me!?!
I can’t help myself…
I want them to have the same opportunities I had as a child, which is to participate in activities they like.
I loved participating in sports as a child. I think being involved in sports kept me out of trouble, kept me fit, enabled me to forge strong bonds with friends, gave me incentive to keep my grades up, taught me how to be a “team player”, helped me understand the importance of self-discipline and self-motivation, showed me what I’m physically capable of, and so much more.
Maybe this years busy schedule makes me a bad mom. I don’t know.
I do know that if their grades suffer or they start getting too tired and cranky, then we’ll make the necessary changes. As I said, I’m not pushing the girls. I’m allowing them to experiment with activities that may end up being their lifelong passions or then, again, maybe not. Who really know’s where a child’s interests may lead.
What I do know for sure is that we want to give the girls the opportunity to find out what their passions are, while still making sure we have enough down time to relax and bond as a family.
What do you think?