I delayed writing this. I was hoping if I didn’t write about it, this wouldn’t have to be the end.
But now it’s safe to say my oldest won’t be continuing in soccer school for now. After two weeks, the coaches had to change practice time to 8-10 P.M.
The other parents were upset too. I held out hope that they would be able somehow to change the time back. But this turned out to be wishful thinking.
The dreams I had of being able to provide this great experience for my daughter were dashed.
I know it’s just soccer school. I know there might be more opportunities in the future. I’ll search for them. I know this is not the end.
But this was about more than soccer. It was about pressing into our surroundings, continuing to make a home here. To fight against giving up when situations seemed too difficult.
It was about fighting to give our kids experiences here (somewhat) similar to some they would have in America. Finding a way to do that in community with Egyptians, surrounding ourselves with other people besides those we know.
It was about listening to my daughter’s desires and finding a way to make it happen, and then fighting to make it happen when it wasn’t easy.
The Long Fight
We don’t have a clean park nearby to play soccer. We don’t have a YMCA. We don’t have an easy way to just get outside and play.
I have to fight for outside activities. I have to work at it. And I have to do it with a cheerful, optimistic attitude so that my kids enjoy the adventure instead of feel disappointed about living in a city.
And sometimes I just get tired. Part of me would really rather watch the kids play in the yard, wearing frumpy house clothes. I don’t really want to get dressed, carry toys and water three blocks to play at the mosque park, avoiding dogs and broken glass.
Dashed Hopes: “Then why do we do it?”
So I sit here writing this post, thinking of a way to neatly tie this up. And I think, Then why do we do it?
And I think about the woman on the street around the corner I always get to greet on these outings. And I remember the butcher who is always excited to see my son.
And I remember that when we have to get out, we come in contact with people. Even if I don’t want to.
I’m reminded that people are what is beautiful about this place. God’s finest creation. And if we are here to love our neighbors, I’ve got to get out around them.
Dashed dreams are a reality sometimes. I’m disappointed, but I’m not out. Dashed dreams are not the end. I believe there will be other opportunities.
I will fight for more chances. And this weekend, I’ll pack water bottles and carry toys and we will go to the mosque park and I’ll genuinely smile.
Sarah serves in Egypt with her husband and four children. You can catch her blog here.