Friday, January 28, 2011

Crowning Moments!

Time was running out!  We had been playing this numbers game, going back and forth, the whole nail-biting time.  And now, when we were so sure that victory was ours, a well-aimed toss by our opponents could have just sent our triumph out the window. The score was Home 26, Visitor 27.  Twenty-eight seconds left, 94 feet of court and 5 basketball warriors to hurdle and we could still claim our prize.  Time slowed as the ball was thrown in and, as if in slow motion, the ball was seized and a line drive made right for the basket.  He's never going to make it!  There were too many enemies intent on stopping us!  He made a dodge left, a duck under, a quick leap to the right, one step, two steps; the defending team were mere aids to his perfectly executed lay-up, and he scored!!  We did it!!

This may sound like the final seconds in Jimmer's recent wave of glory, (if you don't follow collegiate basketball, just ask anybody about Jimmer Fredette), but it was my son's church basketball game last night.  I have to admit he wasn't the final-scoring hero, but all that were there felt the pride that came with the well-fought victory.

Well, the reason I tell this story is to bring up my topic today: self-confidence.  I am convinced that a child's, or anybody's confidence will be one of the main factors in their success in life.  Something to think about: are we setting our kids up for succeeding in life, or failing? 

My newly-turned 12-year-old, being the youngest and smallest on the team, and this being only his second game, has been a little intimidated to play.  As such, the amount of play time when on the court is very negligible because the experienced players naturally dominate the ball.  Five minutes into last nights game, the coach, in a moment of insanity, (as determined by all who witnessed it), put in the 5 most inexperienced, youngest players all together.  They were almost a head shorter than every member of the opposite team at that point.  But that's when the miracle happened.  That little 5-member team, previously soliciting the outer edges of the action were thrown into the midst of the flames; and how they shone!  Their once hesitant demeanor changed in an instant and our little guys took charge.  I cheered proudly as my Weston charged up behind a member of that opposing team and stole the ball right from under his nose.  He was a defensive animal when their team was trying to shoot, and he even got fouled while he was making his own offensive plays.  He and his team were on fire and they glowed with confidence.  The rest of the game for them was truly a "crowning moment".

How do we get that confidence in our young ones so that they grow into confident, successful adults?  I would love to hear your comments.  And since this is my blog :) I am also going to share my own thoughts.  My husband and I have discussed this frequently.  We believe that by finding and developing our children's talents, and then giving them opportunities to perform and use them is a huge confidence-builder for them.  We also never tell our kids that what they want to do or try is impossible.  If they are struggling with something, we let them know that anything worth putting our time into takes work, patience, and perseverance.  And most of all, give them praise, praise, praise. 

Our experience last night is one of many I could, and probably eventually will, mention.  I have to thank those who have such an impact on my kids and their confidence levels. Through that encouragement and praise they are becoming forces that will change the world for the better.


  1. Way to go Weston! I really enjoy reading your blog. Your stories and experiences are very insightful. And the blog looks great!

  2. As the one responsible for putting all 5 small and young players in at once, I will have to say that it seemed a bit odd to me at first, but since, I have come to feel that it will be a regular thing. They did indeed step up and become the leaders.

    When I was a young man, church ball was so competitive that only the experienced got to play. Because of that I rarely was put in, and when I did I was so nervous I would throw it away. I have come to feel that in church ball, for me winning really isn't the goal. The goal is to have fun, learn skills, and work together. The boys may have the goal to win and push toward that end, but if all boys don't get enough playing time, regardless of the final score, I have failed.

    Frankly, I know nothing about coaching basketball - so I rely on others to teach the fundamentals, but those who show up will play. I can at least do that much.

  3. Yay, Weston!

    In response to your question, too many parents helicopter their kids these days. If you want to raise a self sufficient kid, you've got to let them solve their own problems. Here is a post I wrote almost a year ago on this topic.



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