Tuesday, April 8, 2008


There are times for every parent when you allow a child to make their own choices. And then you wonder if that was a great choice on your part.

Last night, I allowed Tyler to quit gymnastics. I called the gym and canceled his enrollment and even emailed his coach. Who was shocked. After all, Tyler was a strong competitor, always has a great attitude towards workout, seems to love gymnastics, and was just talking about next season. He hasn't ever really voiced the desire to quit. Plus, he's adorable in his uniform.

But, yesterday, he was not at all interested in going to gym. He barely went at all over spring break, and I knew that summer would also be a problem because ultimately, he doesn't want to quit playing outside in order to get ready and go to gymnastics. I think that's the biggest factor.

But it makes me sad. And I'm not really sure why. I didn't expect him to go to the Olympics. I didn't really expect him to compete much past level 5. But I guess I didn't expect him to suddenly be done either.

So, am I making the right choice? Am I allowing him to just be lazy? Or am I allowing him to be in control of himself and learn different lessons than gymnastics can teach him? And, did I try hard enough to explain some of the obvious consequences? Although it isn't too late now to return him to class, in about a week they will shift new kids to team spots and then it will be too late. His spot will be gone. And after a month or so, he will no longer have the strength required for spinning madly around the high bar or laying his body parallel between the rings. He has worked so hard for the skills he has.

But, then part of me is thrilled to not put out the cash that gymnastics requires. Not to mention I will no longer drive back and forth to the gym 4 days a week, sometimes staying to watch because he wants me to. I get a lot of time, money, and gas back. It's times like these that I wish for a crystal ball. Because if he's going to be a couch potato and try to live at home until he's 30, I'm gonna need to know.

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