My journey as a basketball mom began when my youngest son represented their school in a district meet and eventually to Cavite provincial meet. He will be away for five days, and it’s our first time. They will be staying in public school building so I prepared his mosquito net, rechargeable fan/light, clothes and toiletries and some snacks. On the first day, I was anxious because I will be leaving him there but he made me sure that he is okay and will be okay. I left him my cellphone so I can reach him every now and then. Sleeping on that first night was hard because he is not by my side, but I have to brush up the thought because he may not be able to sleep well. The following day, after sending my two sons to school, I traveled again for 3 hours going to Indang, Cavite, to watch his games and bring him some food and wash his jersey uniform after game. Travel going home is much longer because of the traffic. Same routine goes on for five days. Luckily their team won all their games. On the fifth day I went home with him already. All the memories, all the experiences are insurmountable, I can see so much fulfillment in my son. He had learn a lot from this experience, which we cannot teach at home neither he can learn in school.
As a basketball mom, it is not always joy as we watched them play, most of the time there’s fear, there are worries, as he might get hurt, as it maybe a bad game for him, as he may get offended, sometimes get angry with himself as he did not play well. We as parents must always be ready to be at their back. Sometimes, you even want the game to be finished already, sometimes you even pray that your son will not be called for minutes to play, much more when you see agitation in the court during plays. His love for basketball does not end there. He decided he wants to play in Manila. I agreed because his two brother will be studying in Manila also and he will be entering high school already. We decided to looked for schools with high school varsity team. We first went to Adamson then to Letran. It was not easy, we went there several times but the coach was not around. Called several times but no schedule of tryouts yet. Finally after several days we were able to meet the coach and had a tryout. He was absorbed in the team and began practicing almost everyday.
In all of these, I am present, I am with him, not a single practice or game that I will miss. From Cavite we travel to Manila everyday, as early as 5 am call time or sometimes go home as late as 11 pm. With this schedule, I have to make time doing all the household chores, attending to the needs of my two sons and all of the family because my husband is working abroad. Come June of 2018, the inter-school basketball season began. He was chosen to play in five leagues for the 1st season, that means 2-3 games on a weekend or another game if a Monday falls as a holiday. We commute from one venue to another, from Manila to Quezon City to San Juan. We must be in the venue 1 hour before the game plus two hours allotted time for the commute. Sometimes we got a hitch from my co-parents as we transfer from one venue to another. Before every game, I got to help him prepare his jerseys, his extra clothes, his shoes, his energy drinks and snacks. Truly, we don’t have weekends for rest since then. All our weekends are scheduled for his games. We were surprised because it’s totally different here in Cavite, where games are very limited. He got to play against big schools and universities in Metro Manila. Again, my fear, my anxiety and of course my pride while watching is there. It is not only during games that we parents are around, we are also around and during their training after school which lasted for 3-4 hours. That is the time where we parents exchange thoughts and pleasantries and sometimes plan for the kids and their team. It is not easy to be an athlete, their training is very hard (even at a young age) there really must be patience, persistence, strength, character and devotion to the sports they are in. As parents, we must be their number one fan, believer and supporter . But we should also never stop being their critic, this way they will grow and mature well balanced. Supporting our children’s dream is the best and big role for us parents.
MOMMY RUTH G.