Right now, I’m in the soccer mom season of my life. My head is a jumble of who needs to be where and what kids, mine and others I need to get to and from certain places. I seriously don’t know how single parents do it. If Ray weren’t around to help, I have no idea how I would get everyone where they need to be. This week I learned that this season in my life as a soccer mom doesn’t necessarily mean soccer player. 

Thursday night, due to traffic AKA carmageddon I took Hanan to practice and Ray was on Bria duty. It was a quick handoff. I sat in my beach chair and may or may not have been attentively playing candy crush when they announced that parents should come on the field for a little impromptu scrimmage. I had on blue jean bermuda shorts that are frankly a little on the tight side as I think they hold in my lumps and bumps a bit better, slippers (flip-flops) and a dressier t-shirt. It was not exactly soccer attire. In true local fashion, I kicked off my slippers and offered to play defense. I mean, parents vs. kids…it would stay at the other end of the field right? I am an idiot.

It was 5 parents against 11 girls, a couple of which are as tall as me. They had shin guards and cleats. I was completely bare from the knees down standing in sleeping grass. If you have never stepped on sleeping grass, think of it as a camouflaged briar patch hiding in soft lush grass. Ouch! That ball stayed right where I was ALL THE TIME unless I managed to kick it out down the field and then it was right back. I made the decision to go ahead and play hard, just like I want the girls to play. I played hard, not rough but aggressive. At one point, if someone had been filming I’m quite sure they would have won the $100,000 AFV prize. I had four girls on top of me, all of us running to the ball. I kicked the ball out, you know like any good defender is supposed to do… I also went down HARD face first in the grass. I think I bounced. My sunglasses flew across the field. I was trying to pull my too tight pants back up that were slipping off and Hanan was looking at me like I was some sort of gangly newborn calf that couldn’t possible stand up. Actually it may have been like watching an elderly person fall down and break a hip, either way she was concerned. It’s okay to laugh. I did. I got up and moved on. 

We played hard. The girls won by one point. I may or may not have made an 11-year old girl cry. Not really but she was doing alot of whining and I didn’t even throw a chicken wing. The best moment was at the beginning of the game. Just as I was taking control of the ball, Hanan came running at me big old grin on her face yelling, “Not today Mom! Not today!” I swear the ball made a little BOOP sound as I passed it across to another wide open parent. I think the grin on my face at that moment might have been bigger than my daughter’s. 

It was a good night. Everyone left happy…except for Miss Whiney Pants You Can’t Bump Me And Keep Me From Getting To The Ball Because You’re A Mom. Phish! She obviously doesn’t know me well. We went home and I was acutely aware that Hanan had come to the devastating realization that I am no Mia Hamm. Worse though was my own realization the next morning. Ouch! No shin guards and cleats stomping on your feet apparently leave a mark. Someone pass the ice and the ibuprofen!