And so another hockey season ends. Our novice season ended on Easter Monday with a goal scored against us in the last 19 seconds of the semi final game. Then all that was left was the Atom season. The Saturday before last, we faced off against the last team standing between us and the championship banner.
And we lost. You can’t win them all.
After 156 hours of games and practices. Having tied skates until I developed callouses on my pinkie fingers on both hands. After washing hockey jerseys and nagging my boys about hockey bags in my living room and hockey sticks in my van.
Another hockey season has come to an end.
This year ended on a very different note than last. Last year, we celebrated making it to the finals. This year, I watched as Boy #1 had his heart broken on the ice. And my heart broke with his. For reasons that I’m not willing to get into because it was his heart broken so that’s his story to share. Instead I’m sharing the positives from this season.
1. Boy #1 worked harder than I’ve ever seen him work. And it paid off. There is a no other lesson I want him to learn than putting in the work is it’s own reward. He learned that this year.
2. Somewhere in that 156 hours, we have made friendships and bonds that came into sharp focus on Saturday when we needed it most. I watched coaches, convenors and fellow hockey parents help me pick up pieces of a broken hearted 9 year old. They taught him that there is good in the world and there is support outside of his parents. Every kid should experience that.
3. I learned just how far I can push myself and where my limits are when it comes to being at the rink. 156 hours at the rink is about my limit. That doesn’t count the time spent getting kids ready for the ice or volunteering for the hockey association. I say this knowing that I’ll likely be repeating that and more in the years to come. It’s all about the stretch goal. That kind of time commitment gives a person a lot of clarity in what is important. And some weeks it was more important to make sure that there was food in the house than it was to have clean laundry folded.
4. I learned to rely on other parents to get my boys to the rink, or on the ice, or off the ice. There were times that I needed a third set of hands. Thank goodness for fellow hockey parents who stepped in and offered. And I’m so happy we were able to repay the favor now and then. I’m told as they get older, this becomes a common occurrence, and while I’m not used to it as yet, I sure do appreciate the option.
5. This was the first year as a team manager and I have to say I really enjoyed it. Granted, it was for an IP team so I really only sent emails once a week to make sure everyone knew where we were, but I had fun with it and look forward to doing so again next year. Jury is still out on whether I will attempt to tackle a Novice year but I have a whole other hockey season before I have to decide on that.
With that, the season is over. And I’m not going to lie, I’ve been feeling a little adrift. I’ve read a lot in the last week and a bit. I’ve managed to bake. There has been some cooking. But I still haven’t found my groove again. I’ll get there. I may be insufferable until then, but I’ll get there.
We had some challenges this year but in the end I have a boy who finished his IP season with a smile, a boy who went to semi finals with his team and a boy who went to the final game. All three improved. All three had fun.
That’s a great season in my books.
See you at the rink,