Youth Archery Parent – It never ends.

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It is a Sunday morning, at 2:49 a.m.  This archery parent is sitting in bed, watching an autobiography on C.S. Lewis and sipping hot tea.  This is by no means a typical night.  As an archery parent with the archer overseas competing, the connection is through the internet.  Live scoring is about to start again.  There is the extra page on the computer open and it is being checked often. Too often.  Patience is not my strongest virtue.  The start time does not change no matter how many times the page is clicked. Dang it!

Last weekend, the archer drove over the mountain and through the woods (literally) to a tournament to help prepare for this current tournament.  The archer was allowed to go off on his own for the first time.  During that tournament, there was communication concerning safety and arrival, of course.  Then it went into archery.  On that lazy Sunday afternoon, this parent spent much time scouring the house looking for a 10-degree quick release.   Changes were needed to be made and tried upon arriving home. There were several found, but not the “right” one.  As those others were not the brand he wanted.   Searching the garage, the office, the junk drawers, bedroom, etc.  The archer ended up using one of the parts that were found after much time was investing in locating them.  Organization of my sixteen-year-old is equal to the aftermath of a tornado.

This weekend, much sleep has been lost checking on live scoring.  The mental stress increases as a parent when the archer is out of your control.  There have been many conversations, corrections, a few reprimands, and many praises this past year preparing the archer to rely on another adult. Additionally, to ensure behavior and BEHAVIOR are appropriate.   There have been tough texts sent and a couple received on problems that need to be addressed.  There have been far more successes than mistakes, thankfully.

By the time an archer is a seasoned national competitor, there is a shift in needs for the archer.  Mental management of the archer and the parent come in to play.   Even with successes, there are the concerns about physical health and strain on young muscles.  Pains and aches are managed.  The archer spends much of the time training, so ensuring that when there are teenage time opportunities, encouragement is giving to go have some fun.

Even when negotiating curfew time, because that is always a debate, this parent gives weird times to be home.  Like 11:14.  Two reasons, first, typically is how we agree on a time, next, giving an obscure time actually helps teach time management.  There is a challenge there and the lesson in being on time.  Time management is taught and learned.

It is now 3:26 a.m., 14 minutes until the next scoring round begins.  This archery parent is wide awake and my attention at church will be a struggle in the morning, well, daylight.  These new levels come with many additional stresses.  The biggest worries are the distance and keeping the scenarios of tragedy possibilities in check in the head.  Oh, this parent is a WORRIER!  (7 minutes to go!)  Dreams often come with battle wounds.

Not only that, but we also rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope.  Romans 5: 3-4

Scoring is up!  Shoot Straight.  May at the end of each day hope be what we have left.

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The Archery Parent “Pitfalls”

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Yes, this archery parent played Pitfall in her youth.  In fact, my sister broke the 10,000 points mark and a photo was taken with her and the score.  A Polaroid camera, of course, was used.  Now that has not one thing to do about archery, other than it fits the blog title. First, there is no former training, unless a college child phycology course counts.  The education is parenting and being involved st a sports parent for 18 years.  There are many pitfalls that cross all sports that can lead to traps and falls.  Archery is a very unique sport, so it quickly complicates and can muddy water for the archer.

These are areas that personally this parent has crawled in and out of or witnessed on the fields.

Over Protecting/Involved Parent

GUILTY.  It definitely helps that the archer is the youngest child.  Experience as a football team mom, travel ball team board member…Stepped into a few situations that are regretful.  A young momma lion is not always easily tamed.  There are lines that need to be protected.  In archery, that line is the competitors’ area line…try to handle situations like you are observing the situation.  In the middle of the competition, all emotions are high and things can escalate quickly.   Trying to ensure the archer is shooting and focusing on the target is the main goal.

Over Coaching Parent

These parents just want to help.  This parent gets it, once again guilty.  There are numerous times that this parent offered baseball tips that were yelled towards the batter’s box.  Archery is a quiet game, it takes little to be seen and heard by the archers.  There is not supposed to be talking on the line…okay, well this is not always followed by the young.  The young archers should be taught to focus on the target.  Constant coaching and suggestions are hard on the archers during competition. Yes, this archery parent has competed in sports, including archery.  Being coached during the shot is not helpful.

“Soccer” Type Parent

Guilty, again!  Archery can’t handle soccer parents.  Archery is a quiet sport.  Think golf.  Soccer is a fast game, adrenaline is needed to keep the game moving fast.  Archery, it is the opposite.   Pacing and fidgeting are not helpful.  Find your zen.

My Child is Amazing Parent

Hoping to not be too guilty of this syndrome.  It is hard not to want to talk about our archer and accomplishments, however, not needed.  Let the archer’s actions on the field say all that needs to be said.  This parent tries to stay humble and thankful in the good and bad.

No one works harder than “my” Archer Parent

Let this be said…THERE IS ALWAYS an archer that is working harder.  There is always an archer that is hungrier.

Not Guilty.

 High-Pressure Parent

This is the parent that uses muscle with words to try to motivate.  It has been heard by a couple parents on the field the archer better get it together or they are done.  That they did not come here for the archer to lose.  Or the cuss words that can fly when the archer is not performing perfectly or the arrow did not hit the center.  The finger shaking, huffy puffy parent to the archer.  There are times to motivate! There are times to shake a finger, but not at an arrow or mistake on the line.

An archery parent can ABSOLUTELY destroy a young archers career.  It has been heard many times that archery parents are the worse, by those in the business of archery.  If we become the tar pits, crocodiles or scorpions in the archers’ path, the journey will be much harder.  No one should have to use a rope to swing over a parent as an obstacle.

 

Shoot Straight.  Visit facebook: https://www.facebook.com/archeryparent/?fref=ts

Comments, ideas, and stories always welcomed.

Fall is in the Air – Indoor Season

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Fall or Autumn or Pumpkin Spice Latte, hunting season…this archery parent loves the switch from outdoor season to indoor season.  This week central Oregon has had a light switch in weather, with below freezing evenings coming this way.  Indoor season means the end of travel and a switch in the game.  The time when financial pressures, move to mental pressures of the upcoming financial pressures as a new season is planned.

Wait, it is the end of travel.  Sigh.  Take a deep breath.  Each year travel presents challenges and stresses that have stretched this parents mental, physical and spiritual health.  As a parent of a now driving archery, this will be the first official indoor season that hours each day are spent NOT waiting in town for the practice to be concluded.

Physical health?  Two years ago in the month of May, my not so graceful self -took a tumble off the deck breaking the right foot.  The first four days, due to the fact that the other archery parent was driving the archer to a tournament for several days, never went to the doctor…well had a herd of animals to care for.  Broken did not stop the process.  The foot needed surgery….there was an upcoming tournament.  Six weeks later, really need a surgery…there was another an upcoming tournament…the good news, after 16 weeks in a boot the foot healed well.

Mental health…let’s just say…four years ago an airplane ride caused panic attacks…now, just nervous.   Archery stretched my courage and secured a spiritual growth that is relied upon as often as it is remembered to breathe and thank God for being there.

Fall is really the beginning of the archery season.  September sponsors contracts are in review.  By October the new contracts are released.  November new bows hit the market.  All during this time, archers have moved inside.  New arrows are fletched and tuned.  Local shops startup indoor leagues.  The time changes and darkness take away long hours being outside, with the sun as the closed sign.  Indoor seasons, often archers are limited to hours available to shoot.

Fall is in the air – It must be the indoor season (almost).target6-Large-1024x683

 

 

The Silent Archery Parent – Or When to Keep Your Mouth Shut

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One of the hardest aspects of life and relationships is being silent at times.  Then knowing these times compounds the issue.  Even on social media, especially, on social media, this is a time to know when to be silent.  Recently, an opinion was asked about an archery related subject. This archery parent is invested, like the rest of us, in the future of archery, by default at the very least. So, an honest kind opinion was given…

There is a difference between offering an opinion and then having someone, that does not know you, start a debate or even an argument.  There are times for healthy debates and even healthy arguments.  Typically, those time should be face to face.  Starting a debate or argument with a “virtual” stranger, can and will eventually create drama.  Yes, this archery parent has had a couple relationships hurt by social media. This instance, the comment was deleted.  Not worth the time, this time.

The lessons learned are this, when the heart rate increases in a negative way, pay attention.  Remove yourself and the situation…and take a day or two.  There are many that handle things the minute ruffles get feathered.  However, for this parent, the lessons have led me to take a breath.  Pray on it, chew on it, weigh the relationship, pray on it…then act. This is with social media.  Real life, sometimes head on is the only way, sometimes just stepping out is needed.

In the past two years, one archery relationship was healed and growing.  The second that was affected, took time, but we are kind and respectful to each other.  Looking at biblical principles, always help draw the attention off of the emotions, which can be five at a time, and on to the working forward.  Recently, on the internet, a page was screen shot and saved and even printed as a reminder to have on hand at tournaments and in life.

WHEN TO KEEP YOUR MOUTH SHUT

By God

In the heat of anger – Proverbs 14:17

When you don’t have all the facts – Proverbs 18:13

When you haven’t verified the story – Deuteronomy 17:6

If your words will offend a weaker brother – 1 Corinthians 9:11

If your words will be a poor reflection of the Lord or your friends and family – Peter 2:21-23

When you would be ashamed of your words later – Proverbs 8:8

If the issue is none of your business – Proberbs 14:10

Of your words would convey the wrong impression – Proverbs 17:27

If your words would damage another’s reputation – Proverbs 16:27

If your words will destroy a friendship – Proverbs 25:25

When you are feeling critical – James 3:9

If you can’t speak without yelling – Proverbs 25:28

(There are more on the list, but these seem most appropriate to the archery field.) The last one in very large print was this Proverbs 21:23

“WHOEVER KEEPTH HIS MOUTH AND HIS TOUNGE, KEEPETH HIS SOUL FROM TROUBLE.”

In a resolution, this archery parent has to says…all we can do is try.

 

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A Boy and A Bow – An Archery Poem

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A Boy and A Bow

 

This is a story of an archery bow

Put in the hands of a young boy that sparked a glow

The world of archery entered into his sights.

Striving to find those shining bright lights.

 

Thousands of arrows have hissed through the air

Shooting each with purpose, taking the targets dare

Fed a soul hunger towards perfecting the shot

That wants only arrows to mark the x spot

 

With miles behind and more still to go,

This archery parent prays it stays slow

While reaching towards the ultimate goal

Of standing on the podium shining with gold

 

An army of archery “angels” guiding the way

Helping prepare the archer for each day

To a path that needs many to help a archer grow

With sincere gratitude, all my heart can bestow

 

No matter the end of the story being told

The heart will have many stories to hold

Archery brought purpose and love for a game

No matter the outcome, no matter the fame.

 

By: This Archery Parent

 

archeryparentblog.com

Technology and Archery

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This archery parent is just a couple of weeks away from 44 years old.  In fact, my amazing husband is sending us to Indiana for this birthday.  This is a joke in the house right now, as it is during an archery tournament.  Ha Ha.  What does this have to do with technology?  Well, it is not clear if it is just age or the fact old school, old soul is more the norm.  Technology amazes this archery parent.

Tonight, as Dream a Little Dream, 80’s movie marathon is playing on Hulu, the fingers are typing this post.  Trying to decide on a topic or idea to write on tonight, research on a handful of websites were visited to inspire.  Tonight what caught the eye was USA Archery and the national ranking pop into view on the main screen.  Clicking on the page and selecting the top name in the division…it takes one-off to Rcherz.com and the stats on all the archers.  This is so cool…yep, this parent is old.

For all archers competing in the various divisions within USA Archery, there is a stats page on each archer.  It was decided to click on the top Senior Male Compound archer, in the USA.  It was really mind-blowing (remember my age).  The information on that top archer, Braden Gellenthien, went back to competitions in 2007.  The page includes personal bests, and circle and line graphs.

This is not a “plug” for Rcherz, however, it has been a great page, that this archery parent appreciates. And many others, with live results and updates on tournaments around the world.  The reason this is so amazing, it that a few ideas have been swirling around in the noggin and the instincts (heart) keep it old school.   Pen and paper…oh, the love for pen and paper.  This is the heart talking.  The head, says, nope an app…for a phone?, questions the heart.  How the heck does that happen…

Technology and archery….beginning to think, that this archery parent needs to stick to blogging, at least it is still almost like pecking away on the old typewriters.  It was amazingly a thought last night, that it was time to go find one at a thrift store.  A typewriter to have and use.   This apparent aging archery parent is thankful for technology and the effect in the archery world.

 

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Blessings, and prayers.

This archery Parent.

 

 

 

 

Romans 8: 38:39

38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a]neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

 

D.C.C.

Archery, the “Luck” of the Stars, and A Prayer

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images-8Most of us have heard some saying that includes the words “when the stars align.” These words have been said and heard at many tournaments.  Archery and making the podium is much like that day when you hit every green light driving through town, and you drive into the parking lot and there is a space waiting up front in a filled lot.  These are rare days, it seems often.  As the archer prepares, like the 180 youth coming from all over the USA to make a team of three, we pray for success.  This team can consist of any young archer coming.  This is not like horse races, there aren’t favorites or odds.  Just a group of very talented archers come together to shoot it out.

In this home, when the archer is mentally preparing, we use words like when you make the top 8, or make the team.  This archery parent asks after practice some days if he is ready to win.  The answer is yes, from the archer.  This archery parent then says, yes, you are ready to win, let’s pray the stars aligns that way.  Every archer and parent coming into the World Archery Youth Team Trials are hoping and praying that it is their archer that makes the team.  Every young archer there is dreaming the same dream.  Every archer there has worked hard and parents have sacrificed to afford and take the time required to attend not only this tournament but every tournament.

Came we pray:

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank you, Lord, for the opportunity our children have to follow a passion and the love of archery.  Thank you, Lord, for allowing us to be attending, not only as parents and archers, also friends and family.  As an archery community, may we come together with kindness.   As parents and mentors of the young, may our actions and words glorify you.

In mistakes, we ask you offer grace and forgiveness of self and of those that may error against us.  Lord, may the fields be safe, may the archers be protected, may the judges be blessed.  Lord, in anger and frustration, help us breathe and love.  Lord in defeat, may our hearts not break, but draw on you for strength.  In triumph, may our heart be humbled and gracious.

Lord, may the arrows fly safe and straight.  May the equipment stay steady and true.  May the field be filled with joy and laughter.  May the travels of all be easy and restful.  May the return home, not matter the outcome, be peaceful and reflective.  Lord, in all things we are called to give thanks and to love others.

Thank you, Lord.

Amen.

This Archery Parent’s Prayer