Blog Your Blessings: Yes, Adella, Your Team Can Win a Game

Pure Life I

In the world of little-kid sports, "playing your best game" is the only mantra chanted by parents en route to the court or field, right?

Right.

It's not if you win or lose--but, then, why are we keeping score?

Because if you play your best and your best is better than the other team's best, you should win. It's that' simple. The world of sports is the one place where the relationship between cause and effect has not been disfigured by psychology, social work, and other forms of do-gooder confusion. You play well, you win. You do your best but lose and you have the comfort of knowing you tried hard--and the discomfort of knowing someone else's best effort produced better results. So you have to try harder.

I don't get sports, but I do get that, and I like it. Good kids can lose and it's okay. Good kids can lose but try harder and make a come back and win. And it's okay.

In fact, it's wonderful.

And that, finally, is what happened for my daughter's basketball team this week when it won by one point in overtime against the chronically stronger team from the neighboring town. The girls gave it everything they had, and they won.

It was pure magic to watch them interact in a singular way that led to victory. It was exciting to watch them outwit the other team's powerhouse by messing with her expectations--simply not going where she expected them to go--and throwing her off her game. It was fun to watch the biggest girl on Adella's team yank her of the floor and then run with her down the court and do everything right once they got there.

It was fun to watch a coach who expects to win all the time sweat and fret and just barely manage to keep it together to the end. It was fun to watch him looking a little confused as he walked out to his car after the game.

Best of all, though, was watching the joy in my daughter's face because she was part of a team whose brains and girly brawn brought them hard-won, well-deserved victory. It was nice to see her happy to know she and her teammates earned their victory.

(The above image is the water bottle she held during the final minutes of the game.)

Comments

  1. Anonymous3:19 PM

    I played junior varsity basketball in high school and loved it. It was the only time that have played a team sport and actually felt part of 'a team', win or lose. It is wonderful when you get into that groove. Although we always agreed that if we made a group effort we were always winners, it was all the more wonderful when you find yourselves to be 'the winners'!

    Congratulations, Adella and team!

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  2. way to go, always feels good to win but better when you've played your best.

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  3. Having been on a few teams of various sorts in my long life, I've developed the following motto:
    "Winning isn't everything...
    but losing sucks."

    And as much as I'd love to see the only mantra chanted by parents of these young athletes be "play your best game", the ugly truth is that in too many cases it's closer to "just win baby". For those parents, good kids don't lose. And when they do, it's definitely not okay.

    But do congratulate the victors for me on a well-deserved win. And one that was earned in the right spirit form the sound of it. After all, everybody loves a good underdog story.

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  4. And it was great reading what you as a mother has felt and has seen. Great post, Sandy!

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  5. i wish more adults got this concept...

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  6. It always feels good to be a winner. It makes you happier and work harder for the next victory. Congrats to your daughter. And belated happy b-day too.

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  7. Just one point?! Wow! I am not much into sports but yeah I think maybe they keep score for a reason. :)

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  8. Anonymous8:27 PM

    It works that way with Scrabble. If I get bad letters and still manage to play a respectable game but lose I feel good about myself, but if I play a bad game (make stupid mistakes or waste opportunities) I am not a happy camper.

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  9. Oh Sandy I am so glad for your girl. It is so hard to keep being beat.

    I am having that battle too but the battle is to be given a chance to try. To get on the team. Our kids learn some very hard lessons so young. As well as the mantra you wrote I find myself repeating more and more "Life isn't fair. It's just the way it is."

    But why does he have to find out so soon? *sigh*

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  10. Anonymous8:36 PM

    Congrats to your daughter!!!

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  11. Yipeee... good for your daughter and her team mates. It is fun to win. My daughter played sports all through school. I have sat through many of those win / lose situations.

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  12. In general, I don't "get" the win or lose mentality of sports, especially for kids, but I must say, it is great to see a team who has tried hard all season pull themselves together and earn a difficult victory.
    And for kids, it's great for them to see that trying and trying finally results in success.

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  13. That is the sweetest kind of victory. Congrats to Adella & her team!

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  14. It has been said that you only learn from defeat. If you are highly competitive, you hate to lose. You work so hard to overcome loosing. Someone once said that winning is a habit and so is loosing. Being highly competitive myself, I understand that. Imagine a scientist that tastes defeat time and time again only to find, after many failures, that one key that leads to a miracle drug. Your daughters victory can have far reaching effects beyond that game.

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  15. Yay for her! And she did a number on that bottle, didn't she?

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  16. Congratulations to your daughter! Sport wins give strength and optimism, and increase will.

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  17. How Cool!
    Is she a conecticut sun WNBA fan? I AM!!!!
    Aloha

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  18. Anonymous4:12 AM

    wise words, sandy. thank you for sharing them. :D

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  19. The bottle tell the tale ... inspiring.

    Come to think of it, I blogged a blessing to ...!

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  20. Anonymous10:08 AM

    Congratulations to your daughter and her team! I went to a very small school-and my team was usually weaker than whoever we were playing. I remember the joy of winning when no one thought we could.

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  21. Congratulations on a great win! All the great stories seem to be about great characters who conquer impossible odds: that last chapter is always a marvellous feeling. I hope it lasts and lasts for your daughter!

    That poor water bottle could tell some survival stories of its own, by the looks of it...

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  22. You gotta love girl power! Good for your daughter and her team. And I love the fact that the bottle reads: Pure Life.

    Perfect for the exhileration she must have been feeling during that game.

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  23. Anonymous3:33 PM

    The water bottle made me very curious! I'm so glad she was able to experience the joy that comes from working hard as a team and succeeding.

    And thanks for stopping by and commenting. :)

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  24. Anonymous3:33 PM

    The water bottle made me very curious! I'm so glad she was able to experience the joy that comes from working hard as a team and succeeding.

    And thanks for stopping by and commenting. :)

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  25. Anonymous10:07 PM

    W O W !!

    That's all I can say aboout the new blog look.

    W O W !!

    Spring cleaning is A W E S O M E!

    -Greg

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  26. Congratulations to daughter's team! I am happy for her. Nice ofr you too and definitely a blessing this week!

    Mine is up also. . .

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  27. Anonymous8:55 AM

    Congrats to your little girl :) Happy BYB Sunday!

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  28. As long as "Winning isn't everything, it's the only thing!" isn't the mantra, then it's all good... but yeah, winning can be sweet... although so can having a lot of fun while losing! :)

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  29. the wonderful feeling of a hard fought well deserved victory is hard to top! Everyone needs to feel this kind of victory! It refreshes the spirit!

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  30. Fabulous! It's fun to be a winner!Happy Blog Your Blessings Sunday!

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  31. Anonymous1:37 PM

    wow - what amazing photos! (and you changed your blog layout; that was a shocker!)

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  32. I like your thoughts and your attitude. And congratulations to your daughter's team!

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  33. How delightful to experience this blessing vicariously today and I read your post and see another version of the water bottle ;--)
    Hugs and blessings,

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