When I was in second grade I started playing soccer. I think I did those little classes when I was littler but this was my first time on a team. This was back before soccer was huge for girls where I grew up so there weren’t very many teams available. There was no rec league or anything so my first best friend Marybeth and I started playing on the U12 travel team….. which, if you interpreted that correctly means under 12.
Now to begin with, Marybeth and I were front row kids. We were ALWAYS in the front row in our class pictures. So tiny. I still think I have flashbacks of that feeling when my 8th graders, who many are taller then me, like to call that fact out. Yeah, I get it, you’re growing and it’s so fun to point out how much taller you are than me. But, technically I AM average female adult height, so…there? Now go sit down so I have the upper perspective advantage again.
So anyway, we joined this U12 girls team. Marybeth and I were 7 (though it’s possible she was 8, her birthday is before mine) and we’re literally against giants on the field. These girls could have been in 6th grade and we’re two of the tiniest pipsqueaks in 2nd grade. I don’t know what our parents were thinking.
Good news is we didn’t get hurt and I’m pretty sure there were more appropriately leveled teams shortly after that. So all’s well that ends well, they say.
I did continue to play for many years after and even for fun as an adult for a little bit so it must not have scarred me too much! There are the nightmares still, though…….