Monday, August 29, 2011

The Game of Life

I quoted John Madden this weekend.  Never really thought I would do that.  But I looked at my son and said "Just like John Madden said, I hope you kids playing football are having fun."
Now my son, Peyton, the football player, thinks that John Madden is a video game character so it didn't really resonate.  Peyton looked at me like I was a little crazy, but what's new?

This weekend Peyton played his first tackle football game.  He has practiced Monday through Friday for the past several weeks.  There was a scrimmage along with high expectations and nerves.  And finally a game.  
Even though I despise the time commitment and the idea of my son getting hurt, I sucked it up and made him a huge pep rally like sign that said "Go Bulldogs! We love you # 17!"  My other kids helped color it.  We played an awesome drum line on itunes and marched the sign/banner into the kitchen on game day.  My serious son nodded his head and quietly said, "thanks."   

"Don't you like it?" I asked like a needy teenage girl.

"Yeah, but just don't bring it to the game," only 9 and already so worried his family will embarrass him.

I rolled up the sign and turned off the drum line feeling flustered like a rejected, needy teenage girl.

Peyton and his dad, both a bundle of nerves, left early for the game. After they were gone I freaked out a little from my own nerves....

Football is a really interesting beast. The intensity, the dads, the tackling, the time commitment, yada, yada, yada.

After pulling myself together I scrambled to get the other three kids together and make it to the game on time.  It was a hot day and I was worried about Peyton playing since he had been battling a fever on and off all week.  Even though I knew his chances of getting in the game were slim because of missing practice, I still wanted to be there to support him.

Racing into the stadium five minutes late, I missed it.  He went in for the injured quarterback for a few plays and I missed it.  My heart sunk, one part of me was so sad.  The other part of me was so annoyed that I spent an hour getting everyone out the door and we missed it.  

But I didn't miss this.
My husband, one of the coaches, telling my boy, "You did a great job son."

Now to quote someone else I never thought I would, Joe Namath.  He said, "Football lessons you learn as a kid, you continue to apply for the rest of your life.  Life is a team game, it's the big game."

So, here we go, after seeing just that one moment on the field I'll buy it Mr. Namath.

For the rest of this weekend's game I hung out under the bleachers with the other kids.  (So funny considering what my memories are of being under the bleachers at a football game in a past life.)  

Here is what I am quoting from, a video by Kenny Chesney, a little heavy on the sentimental, but good:

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