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When I was in high school, I absolutely loved being on sports teams. The camaraderie built between my teammates and I on the court had a drastic improvement on our friendship off the court. My teammates became my friends. They became brothers. They became family. In high school, I was a part of the cross country team, the track team, and the volleyball team. There was some overlap in my teammates. We would participate in sports together, and it was great. But through it all, there were two that were always with me: my parents.

They would be at a lot of my races or games. My dad, often taking pictures of everyone, would ask my teammates to pose for a picture. I of course, felt annoyed. My mom would often be the food mom. She would always have snacks and homemade cookies for the team before or after our race/game. Though I didn't always like having them around, I can definitely say that I appreciate it now.

As the Athletic Director, I often ask the middle schoolers if their parents are coming to watch their game. Many times they say no. I've even had some athletes specifically tell their parents NOT to come. Is it because they get embarrassed if you're watching? They don't want you to have to see them get blown out by the opposing team? One of the most common reasons I get is simply this: I get nervous when they're there.

If you're a parent and you can relate to any of this, please, go to the game. Watch your child's team play. I know there are instances where your child may not get much playing time, or any playing time at all. If that's the case, please don't view attending the game as a waste of time. It's not. Showing up matters to your child, even if he/she doesn't play. Why do they get nervous if you're there watching the game? BECAUSE THEY CARE THAT YOU'RE THERE.

Check out this article about why it's important to attend your child's games/events.

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