This month I want to talk about parents and their kids roping. My children are now nine and six. Hali is nine and is all about gymnastics. Gabriel is six, into baseball and has a game every week. I have told them from the beginning I would never make them rope. I might entice them, if possible, because I enjoy them being in the arena with me. Whatever they choose to do, I want them to work at it, and I will support them.
Kids go through spells and letting my kids have fun and enjoy themselves is important to me. Both of my kids have horses and when they want to rope or ride they definitely have the opportunity.
Actually it might be a blessing that the kids have other interests right now. They both can catch fairly consistently, but I would really like for them to get bigger and have more strength before they start roping many steers. Hali can catch steers that run pretty fast and her roping ability has surpassed her physical ability to control her horse. Don’t get me wrong; if she wanted to rope, I would be all about it. But I’m happy to let her get bigger and stronger, plus I’m learning a lot about gymnastics.
In my years of roping I have seen parents that have been consumed with going down the road and pushed their kids to rope so much, and hauled them so many places, that when the kid turns 16, they never rope again.
Parents often ask how they can get their kids to practice and not just want to compete on the weekends. My answer is simple. If they don’t want to put in the time and effort to practice, then don’t haul them on the weekends. I firmly believe the desire and “want to” has to be there. My kids will have to practice, prepare, and be able to do things in the practice pen correctly before we haul them off to compete.
I believe it’s important to work for what you want and work to achieve your goals. We try to instill this in our kids. If they want a movie night or a new toy, they need to earn it. I try to teach my kids that you have to earn money to spend money. One year for Christmas, Hali wanted to shop for her mom, aunts, and grandmothers, at the jewelry store. She bought them each a nice piece of jewelry and then after Christmas she had to work it off. The next year when we went to the jewelry store, she didn’t ask how many dollars things cost; she wanted to know how many days they cost. She decided to make gifts at home that year.
One thing my father taught me well was to be prepared, rested, and ready to compete at whatever you’re going to do. That’s what I want to teach my kids. Whatever they choose to do, I’m behind them, as long as they are willing to work at it.
What’s new with me: This weekend I was at the Joe Beaver Superstar at Fired Up Productions in Athens, Texas. We have all the runs from this event. Then we headed to the 4th Annual Danny Dietz Memorial in Rosenberg, Texas. It’s an exciting format because all you have to do is out rope one team to move forward.