A few nights ago, the courage finally rose up enough to sit down in front of the computer and start to finalize outdoor season (one left) and prepare for the indoor season. In order to do this, multiple tabs on google had to be opened to start to coordinate dates with the organizations that are required or typically attended each season.
The first tab was USA Archery – The year is always set around the USAT national tournaments. Why? It represents an association that the archer enjoys the most, target/FITA style archery. The goal is to attend one indoor national tournament, the mandatory JOAD outdoor nationals, and two of the four USAT qualifiers. There is always the last of the season added as a maybe. Well, this is just in case another tournament can be used to improve the national standings and/or make the USAT. (United States Archery Team)
The second tab was the World Archery page. When an archer is reaching towards the top and staying consistent and growing, there is a time that international travel needs to be considered. The archer has competed in two international tournaments and preparing for his third. Now this a very hard part of archery and the emotional status of this archery parent. This archery parent stays home. The tournaments are considered safe and the selection is narrow.
The third tab is the NFAA, National Field Archery Association. The fun to be had at NFAA events. Hands down, the favorite of many archers. Every year the Vegas Shootout and 3D nationals are on the calendar. In fact, this archery parent will most likely still attend these events if the archer attends as an adult and not living at home. They are fun and always include so many dear friends and archery family, it is a reunion.
Fourth, fifth and sixth, the three local associations that the archer shoots. These are the foundation of every archer. Local tournaments support our local archery shops and dealers, they grow archers and prepare them for the state and national tournaments or hunting. This season will probably be the first season that only one or two maybe attend by the archery “mom”. This archer is a licensed driver and most are within a few hours of driving. The biggest issue with this schedule is the weather.
After lots of notes and arrows and additions, it is basically set…it is overwhelming. As always, it takes the breath out of the lungs. There is so much sacrifice that goes into any parent of a child seeking dreams. No matter the passion, the fuel is the parents time, patience and finances. It has taken me days to even type about it, let alone go back and finalize it and speak with the archer and coaches to make a few decisions.
Stop the madness. Honestly, the days are numbered that my involvement will be needed.
Those times when you are needed.