Help! I’m Becoming my Sister-in-Law

… but in a good way.

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Last summer, while sitting at the lake, having a cocktail and chatting with Aunt Laura, she told me the story of how she became the coach of Ben’s baseball team. She explained that she didn’t agree with the coach’s methods and his system of punishing the kids who arrived late to games by benching them. When she approached him after the first game to suggest alternate measures, he told her that if she thought she could do a better job, to have at it. So she did. She spent the next few weeks learning all she could about baseball and coaching and, from the sounds of things, really enjoyed her time as Coach Laura.

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When I first heard the story, I thought it was a bit outrageous. Now, I get it.

I’ve been managing Finn’s Select hockey team since early September, and I’m hooked. I was hesitant to volunteer, but then Dean reminded me of all the complaining I did this summer over how poorly the lacrosse team was managed (we still haven’t had our year-end party – we finished the season three months ago). It was time to put up or shut up. And I’m hard to shut up!

The kids on the team are all great and I have a soft spot for each of them. That’s why, when the house league teams were picked, and I saw that not all coaches had the ability and training as Finn’s coach, I pulled a “Coach Laura”.  I couldn’t have my kids in the hands of coaches who, although their hearts were in the right place, couldn’t coach themselves out of a wet paper bag. My kids need to be challenged, pushed and given the opportunity to develop their skills both in House League and at the Select level.

We have a reputation to maintain and I was afraid that helpful, yet unqualified coaches were about to throw our wining streak out the window. That’s why I went a bit crazy and may have bitten off more than I can chew. I sat down and drafted a very nice and convincing email to the president of the league. I went so far as to offer to put together and deliver (with Dean’s help) a coaching training program to all new House League coaches. I had selfish motives, but everyone would benefit in the end. Lucky for me, the president gently and politely turned down my offer.

But I think I’ve been promoted to the league executive… I don’t know which is worse.

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