Yesterday was Annie's first soccer game. I don't think Matt and I have laughed that hard since we were at Disneyland and watching the Fantasmic show. (One of the pirates misjudged his cue and jumped off a platform, while swinging on a rope, and landed in the water and the lights came on and 10,000 kids started to scream and cry).
At practice on Thursday, Annie fell in love with her coach. She flirted with him, proudly showed off her shinguards and spanking new silver cleats. At the end of practice, her coach ran over to Matt and said, "Dude! Your daughter is hilarious. She wants us to call her Pooh Bear."
The morning of the game, I suddenly realized we needed to explain the mechanics of how soccer is played. Unlike practice, there would only be one ball. Annie had a hard time understanding this. "Why, Mommy?" she asked. "Why can't everyone get their own ball?" We also tried to explain that unlike every other instance in her life, today it was OK to try and take the ball away from someone else. We also elaborated on the duties of a goalie- because during practice, Annie kept screaming at the goalie to "GET OUT OF MY WAY! I'M TRYING TO KICK IT IN THERE!" Sigh. It was going to be a long morning.
The other team was warming up in full force when we arrived. Annie trotted down to say hello and the militant coach told us "Your team warms up over there." Our team is mostly kids that are playing for the first time. The opposing team? They've got four year olds that drink protein shakes, take steroids and look like they have flunked preschool for a year or two. They were BIG. And AGGRESSIVE. They had strategy. We had 3 year olds that cried if someone took their ball. They had kids that pushed themselves so hard they vomited during the quarter break. We had a gaggle of preschool geese that traveled together and usually kicked the ball in the wrong direction.
But it was fun- and funny. Annie could usually be found 6 feet behind the action- and if we cheered her name, or encouraged her on- she beamed from ear to ear and would stop in her tracks and wave. She relished the attention- and loved to hear us cheer her on. This kid craves attention- not really sure where that comes from.