Attending a major sporting event with your kids can be an exciting experience for the entire family but it’s not always picture perfect. It doesn’t matter if they normally love the sport you are watching or how well you think you’ve prepared. The stars must be aligned for things to go well.
The 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup — the largest women’s sports tournament in the world— is being played in Canada this month. A recent match in Vancouver featured the host country in a must win situation and drew a record crowd of 54,000 fans. You couldn’t have asked for a more amazing atmosphere!
There was one toddler in attendance (okay, it was mine) who didn’t care about any of this. Normally a big soccer fan, she had an off day (possibly due to our long journey leading up to game time) and there were tantrums a plenty — all over, to and from the stadium.
Sometimes in these situations you just have to keep your humor about you to survive. I’m sure if you asked her she would say the problem wasn’t her, it was us — and her day went a little something like this:
June 21: 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup Round of 16 Canada v Switzerland
4:00 pm- We get to the stadium and find our seats. Great view but Mommy didn’t buy me my own seat…something about saving money since I’m under 3 years old. So I sit on her lap. Cheapskate.
4:01- I place my food order with Daddy. Fries. I want fries.
4:25- Daddy brings my order. Fries and what’s this?? A hotdog? I didn’t order a hotdog. I insist Mommy eat it NOW and get it out of my sight! She’s not listening so I just shove it in her mouth for her.
4:30- The teams are on the field and everyone is standing while they play songs called anthems. I’d rather stay seated on Mommy’s lap while I eat. Mommy tries to stand until I loudly voice my displeasure. Daddy thinks it’s rude not to stand so they debate which is worse: sitting during a national anthem or a screaming toddler. I wish they would pipe down…the game is starting.
4:35- I’m noticing that my team isn’t on the field. Where’s my favorite player Alex Morgan? Wait…we’re watching Canada vs Switzerland? I didn’t agree to this.
5:00- Since my team isn’t playing we may as well go walk around the concourse and I insist Mommy accompany me since she’s such a huge women’s soccer fan. Seriously, the party is out here! All my pals are walking around with their mommies and daddies too!
5:15- Back in our shared seat. There isn’t much action in this game. Mommy calls it a defensive match. I call it boring. I know I could contribute some goals so declare that I will play now and walk confidently towards the field. Mommy says no and that I have a few more years before making any World Cup team. She obviously hasn’t noticed my mad skills in tot soccer class. Sheesh.
5:30- Fine. If I can’t go on the field I want to go walk with my pals on the concourse again. Mommy looks annoyed and pulls out the IPad for me…now we’re talking!
5:45- A goal!!!! FINALLY. Yay!! (Clap, clap, clap)
6:00- Man, am I hungry….where did that hotdog go?
6:30- Game over. Thank goodness. Time. To. Go.
6:31- We stop for a photo to document this “memorable experience”. No paparazzi please. LET’S GO.
6:32- Now we stop to take a photo for Mommy’s blog? NO. NO. NO. Look, I was told we we’re going on a choo-choo train to watch the soccer women play today, yet first came a 3 hour car ride to the train station. We get to the stadium, security confiscates the water from my sippy cup, I don’t get my own seat AND we’re not here to watch my favorite team? What’s wrong with me? What is wrong with you!
6:33- I’ll give you a memorable experience. Right here in the middle of this record crowd exiting the stadium seems the perfect place to lay down, scream and let my displeasure be known.
6:34- Mommy looks like she may cry but I’m sure all the sympathetic looks we’re getting are for me.
7:00- Ahhhh…finally back at our hotel and eating dinner. Mommy says she needs the largest beer they have on tap. I’m not sure what her problem is, I had a great time! I got to ride a choo-choo, made lots of new friends and got whatever I demanded. I do love soccer—I love kicking the ball around with Mommy, wearing our jerseys together and watching the players on the field. Just not when I’m tired.
But there’s no way I’m telling her that. I hear we’re coming back for the Final… 😉
(From Mommy)- Thank you to the residents of Vancouver and fans of the Canadian Women’s National Soccer Team….without your kindness I would have locked myself in the bathroom at BC Place and not come out.