My Soccer Mom Life @JennyHatch

When I was a young woman I dreamed about raising a family of singers.  My children were going to get the leads in all of the school plays and they were going to enjoy every second of their time on the stage, just as I did growing up.

I honestly did not even consider that my kiddos would want to do something else, because children ALWAYS do what their parents dream of them doing…right?
I knew we had a wrinkle in my plans when Shelly was about five and I signed her up for a theatre class at the local rec center. She did indeed perform as the dragon in a play, roaring with the best of them, but when the show was over she walked up to me and said with her little voice quivering, “I DO NOT like standing up in front of people!” And that was that. She did sing in the school choir for a couple years and was in a fifth grade production of Midsummer Nights Dream that was required by her school, but except for a brief time playing keyboard in a band and accompanying various singers on the piano over the years, she does not enjoy being on stage.

Allison, my second child, and lifelong hope for theatrical greatness came along next. She was an obvious gymnast from the time she could toddle and although she begged me to sign her up for lessons, I put it off until she was ten because I could not abide the thought of my daughter growing up in a gym. I encouraged her to audition for Puck in a midsummer nights dream at the charter school, and she did, but she didn’t even get a part. Then I caved and allowed her to join a gymnastics club and pure magic happened as she took to it like the proverbial duck to water. Allison went on to play every possible sport offered at her school and was the captain of her basketball team in high school. She ran track, played volleyball, was on the high school gymnastics team, and even scored a touchdown in her schools powder puff football game.

I went to as many events as I could praying that she would not get hurt as these violent and obnoxious blood fests known as “games” took over our lives and I found myself wearing the coveted title of Soccer Mom. (I grew up in a musical family of eight children and we rarely watched or attended sporting events, we REHEARSED.)

A friend in the 8th grade convinced her to play on the soccer team, and although she had missed all practices and camps, this friend briefly explained the rules to her on the bus on the way to the first game, and my girl became a soccer player. She and her best friend Emily were both gymnasts and one day they decided they wanted to see how it felt to score, so they made a pact to each get a goal…and they did!

The beauty of us being at the charter school was that it was so small, they needed kids for each sport and so the students were able to not only make it on the team, but they actually were able to play.

Allison went on to level seven gymnastics until a basketball injury stopped her cold. Then she coached at the rec for a couple years and also coached during all four years at SUU in the Gymnastics building for the level one and two girls. Sports are perhaps her one great love beyond her family and have defined her life with her certification as an athletic trainer, and her job now as the assistant GM for the local Golds Gym.

The BOYS!!!

My final hopes rested in my three sons choosing to be involved in musical theatre.

I carefully plotted and planned by teaching them theatre games while they were toddlers, singing and dancing around the living room, and signing them up for karate, which teaches many great dance like moves without the stigma of being in a dance class as a little boy.

I came up with the idea to pay them to audition for the shows the school sponsored. Twenty-Five bucks for the initial audition and Fifty if they made callbacks.

I did not hear til many years later but they intentionally biffed their auditions and pocketed the money.

Jeff and Andrew did sing in their choirs, learned enough guitar to sing and play at the same time, and Jeff starred in our wards road show when he was a senior.

He also played Mr. Bundles in Annie when I recruited him to be in a community theatre production.

Andrew sang in his madrigal choir in high school and was open to doing various choral concerts, but he had/has zero interest in musical theater.

Both boys played high school soccer and Jeff ran track and played basketball at the church. Andrew loves to hike and they all are into climbing and hiking around our various climbs in Colorado. Jeff even climbed Longs Peak and they all have done Angels Landing and various 14’ers around the country. Andrew even hiked the narrows in Zions National Park one year and my family loves to spend vast amounts of time in nature, which unfortunately I am allergic to, and have breathing issues that keep me out of the high country.

Finally, BEN! My last hope for a son who could knock out a Harold Hill, or Joseph, or Jean Val Jean…

Well…. you probably know where I am going with this.

Ben is a jock, with a capitol J! He loves soccer. He lives for soccer, He has spent all of his sixteen years either attending his siblings games, playing or practicing on his own many teams, and now he is a defender on his JV team at the local high school.

I have pressured him to participate in musical theatre more than any of our children. He auditioned for the part of the little Banks kid in Mary Poppins for the Utah Shakespeare Festival and he has been in a few productions mostly directed by me.

He has sung in several choirs, and plays guitar and has a beautiful voice.

But he LOVES soccer and you cannot force a child to be in a show.

IT

DOES

NOT

WORK!

My new hope lies in my grandchildren being bit by the musical theatre bug.

We’ll see.

Jenny Hatch
http://www.JennyHatch.com

A few photos and videos of my little soccer man over the years…I can hardly believe he will be leaving on his mission in less than three years.

Expecting Ben in 2002, very pregnant while my nephew Dylan naps on my tummy.

Nursing Ben while Dylan again naps on my lap in 2002.

Bens thirteenth birthday party with his soccer team!

One week old Benjamin with our whole family!

Ben age two eating an apple

Jeff and Ben

Pee Wee soccer when he was six.

Ben losing his teeth…

Rehearsing Cookies for the Cedar City Honor Flight! You can see Ben on the right in the back row. His level of enthusiasm was typical for an 11 year old boy!

Arrow of Light cub award with his Dad.

Uncle Ben holding his new niece!

The video from last nights game. They smashed the other team with an 8 to 1 win. Ben had to leave the game towards the end from muscle cramps. He plays defender and usually plays the whole game. I was pleased to attend and after many years of pretending to understand the rules and regs of the game, I feel like I am finally able to follow it.

Thankfully, nobody at our house plays tennis. I could never figure out the rules of tennis.

God bless all of you parents who have dreams for your children! We sometimes have to let our own agendas for our family go while they explore things that we may have never considered doing. I am so glad for a family that loves to spend time together.

Jeff charmed me on Monday by asking if we could do a little bit of singing for our final family home evening before he and his wife and new baby head back to school for his final semester.

Perhaps my dreams for a musical family have not been in vain.

While meeting our grandchild for the first time was the highlight over Labor Day Weekend, this hour of singing together was also pure joy.

You may be curious why I am not plastering my grandchild’s photos all over my blog and social media.

While that might be my normal inclination, the fact that I spend copious amounts of time blogging about politics and the varying level of backlash that has resulted from reporting openly about who the evil ones in our society are regarding child trafficking, we have decided to mostly stay private on social media regarding the next generation of Hatch family members.

Just know that the pure joy that has resulted from the arrival of this most blessed baby has been a new epoch in our lives!

And I wish I could share more…

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