What we yell. Keep it positive. Sideline gospel — check that. Okay? Okay.

What I learned from watching a basketball this weekend. Heck, seen it at practices too.

I know, I know — I was going to avoid trying to talk about sports as much. Perhaps every other post could be ball driven?

Nonetheless, I will still parallel this to life.

Your mouth. Have I not spoke about this before? What we say in front of our kids? How much we say? How we say it?

But if I am to ask my life be an example of what to do and not do — then I’ll observe others in the same respect.

Please don’t yell obscenities while at a game. I realize, the use of swear words has some well gauged satisfaction when we are heated and mad about something. Don’t ask me how I know this so well. I too, possess the venomous tongue at … Uh times. I have referred to myself as a hot headed Mexican before, yeah? But honestly, in the midst of many young ears — the team, families and their younger children — it just makes you sound and appear like a second rate street thug. Even if your child is an all star player and you’ve taught him or her well — it’s no excuse. And actually, you can see it in the players demeanor during a game. Perhaps a little more attitude than necessary. Confidence is one thing — flagrant boastful disrespectful disposition is another. (Adjective overload again) but had to get a point across.

I’ve been to many sporting events of my daughters and I see the most intense display of personalities on the hardwood. Maybe it’s the tight quarters — as in sitting too closely — perhaps it’s the fast pace game — maybe basketball just breeds a different audience. I think it’s the intensity of the game. Let me derive my own hypocrisy acquisition to my name because I know I’ve had a hard time keeping my mouth closed during exciting games! But I don’t yell crazy bad words.

What is it that causes us to suddenly be ardent speaker of the house to our children during their games? Do our kids really want to hear us shout directives anyway? Let alone throwing in some sharp edged words?

I read a moms post the other day of how she played volleyball in front of her children and what it felt like to hear them yell at her from the sidelines. She thanked them for that eye opening experience. I read this and thought of my own sideline actions. Heck — I feel I don’t know sports well enough to scream from off the court or field — so I do my best to not express anything that resembles direction. Or do I? I sure hope not! Tell me if I am. I can take it. Unless you’re my husband and in that case I take offense. Just being honest. He and I cannot handle each other’s lovely “constructive” criticism.

Perhaps we are all in some alter universe when our kids are playing ball. Is the only thing we know to do is focus our attention on what our kids are doing or not doing? Wouldn’t it be an interesting case study to get in a parents mind and see if the attention is on the things our kids are doing right — - or what their not doing correctly? Is this still our given right as their parent? How much should we turn our children over to the coach? We are asking these volunteers to instruct our kids. And speaking of the coaches — they’ve got an important job with as many as a dozen kids at one time! One thing that is important to us is, our girls be coachable. We expect them to listen and be able to take directions respectful and carry out what is asked of them. As parents our job is in the home. At school this position belongs to the teacher. Holy crap — what if we walked into a class and began telling our kids, ‘listen better’, ‘write more clearly’, ‘hold your pencil this way’ … Get the idea?

I guess I was just surprised this weekend. It was an eye opening experience to say the least. And I am referring to the entire experience of listening to all the teams and their voices from the stands.

I think as parents we all need some type of log pulled from our eyes. I know for a fact that I’ve been called out a few times by my daughters on the construction of my choice of words. I fully expect my daughters to talk to their dad and I respectfully. However, I can honestly say that considering the way he and I have handled our arguments in front of them I can’t blame them for speaking up to us. So I correct them and then I do a reality check on myself and insert the shame card in my pocket. Please Lord, help me to not be so destructive or talk so nasty … As much. Okay. Help me not to at all!

Don’t we see our children act a certain way based on our actions? We cannot deny the impression we make on little ones and how it can unconsciously cause them to behave. Yet, we have the audacity to discipline them when we see them do something that remotely resembles chalky behavior.

Enough said. And better yet — lets shoot for enough said as we sit back and watch them play the sport we’ve encouraged them to do and they continue to do with all the effort given in their souls.

It’s not like they don’t know what their doing. Half the time they know more than us! (Unless you’re the parent coach) But really, many of these kids do know more than we give them credit!

Let me check my sportsmanship gospel at the door — or gate. And remind myself as I learn from others to keep it simple. Keep it positive. Keep it encouraging. Because above all — do you want someone yelling at you like that when you’re trying to complete a task?

A likely answer would be no.

Great job! Good work! You got this!

Oh goodness! I need to set a reminder on my phone to recall this before the next game!