A parent’s dilemma

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I feel so fortunate to have been blessed with two beautiful, healthy children. My daughter will be going into high school next year, and is surrounded everyday by wonderful friends she has met through school and her dance studio.

I support her in every possible way, and I love seeing how passionate she is about dance. As a parent, that is a great feeling.

My son, on the other hand, presents a bit more of a challenge.

He is a second grader, and he loves playing everything. On the school playground, he can be found playing handball, basketball, or even tetherball.

If there is a ball involved, he will be there.

Outside of school, his favorite sports are baseball and golf. I must admit that as a PGA instructor, I haven’t involved my son in golf nearly as much as you might assume.

Instead, he has actively participated on different baseball teams for the past three years. He loves the comradery with his teammates, and he just has a blast throwing, catching and hitting the baseball.

However, this is part of my dilemma.

As a parent, I love knowing that my son enjoys playing everything. I was the same way growing up. It wasn’t until I was closer to thirteen years old when I made the decision to commit to one of two sports — golf or baseball.

And here I am, still a few years away from feeling the need to help my son make a similar decision, but still thinking about it in the back of my head.

After all, these are different times than when I was growing up.
Everything is more specialized.

Kids are committing themselves to one particular sport at a much earlier age than before. Is this necessary? If my son is to excel at a particular sport in the future, do I need to pick that sport now?

I believe the answer is “no.”

I still believe that kids will eventually excel at a particular sport once they become truly passionate about whatever sport they are playing.

My son likes shooting baskets in the driveway, kicking a soccer ball in the backyard, tossing a football in our living room (don’t tell my wife!), hitting golf balls on the practice range, and playing with his friends on his baseball team.

He likes it all, but I’m not sure he loves any of them.

In the meantime, I am determined to introduce him to more aspects of golf as he grows older. I can’t wait to walk nine-holes with him and teach him how to keep score.

Up until now, his golf experience has been limited to a driving range and a putting green. Who knows? Maybe with my help he will realize that he is passionate about golf.

If so, I would be elated! If not, I’ll be ok with that, too.

All I can do now is let him keep playing whatever it is that brings a smile to his face. There is no dilemma in being happy.

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