Forced to Play Kickball


Daniel had his last Cub Scout den meeting as a Wolf Scout last Monday. After all this time, Daniel still has a hard time fitting in. This evening was no exception. We met at the park by the river. All of the parents were under the picnic shelter and the kids had turned feral. After a few words from the den leader (which were pretty much overwhelmed by the screaming and shouting), the kids had a choice: play kickball or don’t play kickball.

Daniel chose not to play. He and a few others played on the playground equipment. However, the kickball game drew more and more of the kids. They joined one side or another and after half an hour there were only two holdouts. Meka and I decided to act and instead of asking Daniel whether he wanted to play kickball, we basically told him to go over there. This should not have been a chore. Daniel lives for kickball-like activities. When we’re not out in the backyard playing catch, Daniel loves to kick the ball back and forth. On Sunday we spent more than an hour out there kicking and catching.

Sure enough, Daniel joined a team and immediately caught a fly ball and got someone out. He ended up scoring several runs. He even got a “home run”. His teammates seemed to like having him around as he really brought something to the game. And – despite everything – he ended up having a good time with his fellow Wolf Scouts.

It’s not lost on me that there were two picnic tables being used under the shelter. All of the other parents migrated to one of the tables, leaving Meka and me at the other one. Instead of getting up and moving over, we decided to take a walk instead… and force our child to interact with his peers.

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