We speak of our "Sidewinder Family" and our "Gold Rush" family. But we never really looked into the dynamics of those "families." These families are composed of at least one boy about the age of 11 years and one or more parents. The Sidewinders is a traveling baseball team that's been together for over two years. The Gold Rush is a football team that's been together for three years. There are several families that overlap both of these groups.
So three days ago, one of the father's of a Gold Rush football team member was completing an assignment for a college composition class. The assignment was to interviews members of a community to find out what forms that community and what value it adds to life. Together with one other father, we discussed our values and how this experience for our boys affected us and made us want to be a part of each other's lives.
What I have realized is that we are a part of this community that is pulled together by youth sports. While youth sports can at times challenge family time, commitment to church activities, and challenge the budget, there is an opportunity to form meaningful shared bonds. We together express a desire to help our kids, and each other's kids to be good people, that is the main focus. But beyond that, we really enjoy one another's company.
Now that football is done, we have a bit of a lull. It will be interesting to see how this community will re-gather itself without or children's activities to pull us together. Will we keep up with each other, or will the tug and fragmentation of modern life keep us apart until next August when the pads and helmets start crunching and crashing again? I hope we keep in touch.