Gold-Medal Mama

If you're playing sports - anything athletic - and want to win, I've got a sweet tip for you: don't have me on your team.

While I love to work out and be active, and I'm actually a decent dancer, sports have never been my strong suit. In school, P.E. was nothing short of disastrous for me. From kindergarten on up, I was lagging behind everyone else panting, dislocating or hyperextending something, getting hit in the face with various balls (hey now, we're still talking about athletics, you pervs!), or falling ungracefully into puddles/off bleachers/into other people. Elementary school was the worst, when the P.E. teacher would pick team captains and then said captains would alternately choose team members - I was always among the last, if not the very last, picked: "Ehh, we've got Rita," (insert reluctant tone and uncomfortable shuffling). And team sports? Forget it. The only thing I ever attempted was track my freshman year of high school, where I complained about shinsplints until the coach moved me to discus and shotput, and then ended up completing the season as "manager" - accompanying the team on the bus to meets and doing menial tasks like distributing water bottles and such. I should have gotten a jersey that said "STRAIGHT-UP DORK" where the name and number should have been.

But here's the thing, and any other mom can relate: when you become a mother, even if you possess NO athletic ability whatsoever, you suddenly develop this insanely honed coordination when it comes to your kids. I noted this this other day when I was playing with the boys. I intercepted Cameron from eating a ladybug with one hand while simultaneously preventing the nightstand from falling over on Colin (who was trying to climb on it). It's like some weird gift that comes with giving birth. I may not be able to hit a homerun to save my life, but I can stop a chocolate milk spill in mid-topple ... halt a toddler's efforts to brave the stairs in mid-step ... locate and position a puke receptacle before the first heave (which, oddly, seems to work for pets too - I'm forever sliding a piece of paper under a hairball-horking cat).

So if your idea of "sport" is bargain hunting or synchronized swimming, and you know you'll never be the MVP no matter how hard you try, don't fret. When it comes to motherhood, I guarantee you'll surprise yourself with your agility (moms, am I right?). It's amazing what physical feats you can accomplish when you know that a few quick moves will save you from having to clean up an epic mess!


  1. Yup, agreed, that was/is me, all but with the vomit thing. Even with my own kids, vomit meant running to find their father and him taking care of them - or the clean up that resulted from me not taking care of it!

  2. yahhh, I think it is more of a sixth sense than coordination though. My husband will be shocked when the kids actually do puke or fall off something when I saw it coming for 5min. MOMS ROCK!

  3. You are your mother's daughter! My parents made me take tap dancing and ballet in a futile attempt to make me graceful. Finally, they just gave up in dismay! I hate to sweat, so team sports were never an option, either. The MOM thing, though.....that I did pretty well. Just look at you!


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