This past year-and-a-half I have invested a lot of time with my kids learning archery. This was something I always wanted to learn, and I was lucky enough to have the best and most patient teacher. My kids, who were 7 and 4 when we first started, had their own bows and arrows to practice with.
As I progressed we started going to competitions. I won’t pretend I’m any good, but the camaraderie and friendliness that everyone had for one another were catching, and I have enjoyed my time with this new sport.
My family is part of the Blackfoot River Bowmen Association, and we love going there to practice our skills. When we first began, my kids would moan about being bored or hot or that their feet hurt from walking; however, we recently had a turning point where my youngest shot at all the targets at a shoot we participated in. Twenty-two targets in all and he didn’t utter one complaint. I call that a victory! Although he missed every target but one, it made him eager to keep shooting to see if he could hit the target another time
I have always told my kids that they need to try a sport and if they don’t like it, they need to finish the season and then they can try something else. They have tried a lot of sports, but none with any success until now. With archery, I wouldn’t let them quit.
This is something we can all do as a family and I’m willing to invest in them so that we can grow as a family unit.
Learning this sport during the Covid-19 pandemic has kept us from feeling trapped in the house. Archery has helped our family grow together and has helped me lift some of the fog of depression that has swirled around me in the last 18 months.
This fall I’m going to try deer hunting for the first time. My parents were both active hunters when I was young, and my dad was super proud when I told him that the boys were learning how to shoot bows. My dad died this spring before he could see us thriving so well. Part of the reason that I want to go hunting is knowing that he would have been excited to see me doing something so out of my comfort zone.