Monday, October 29, 2007

High Quality H2O Boy can't be considered America's Pastime, but it definitely is a fun sport to watch. I have always followed football, and considered myself a fan of the sport, until this year. This is the year I was introduced to football as a player's mom, and realized I knew absolutely nothing about it. Let me tell you, there needs to be a chapter in the parent how-to book for football alone.

What an experience!!

My son has played sports, mind you. A couple years of tee-ball and soccer, several years with swim team and basketball. This year we "tried out" for the football team. They could only keep 35 players on the team and there were 46 trying out. Add that to the fact that there was a weight limit for his team, and my son started out 5 pounds over that 3 weeks before the deadline date. I was nervous for him, but realized this is the way it's been done so many times before and it truly is a lesson on so many levels. (Translated by my husband to, "It's good for him...toughens him up!")

So...this kid tries out for the team, starts watching what he eats better (including cuts out any sodas) and makes the team on his own. The first time it's a make or go home scenario, he works really hard, and gets it. He made weight with a few pounds to spare and was thoroughly enjoying the game.

Left interesting position in that you aren't allowed to actually "tackle". I considered myself a fan before, but see how little I knew? Whouda thunk?? And...can anyone explain to me what makes the special team so special?? SO MUCH TO LEARN!!

Fast forward a few weeks, he injures his wrist after only getting to play in a couple games. I was so disappointed for him! He was devastated!! What to do??

I explained to him that he was still very much part of the team, and he was going to cheer them on anyway. At the time we had no idea what type of injury it was, or how long he would be out, so we made sure he still went to practice to learn the plays and watch the team. At the games he was absolutely the BEST water boy ever!! I'm not just saying that because I'm the mom, he really hustled, tasted the water and overall took his team's hydration very seriously. He was enthusiastic before every game, and really cheered them on.

When it looked like he was going to be out the rest of the season, he continued going to practice and cheering the team on. His doctor didn't want him re-injuring himself with only two weeks left in the season, so she kept him out with a note. He was again disappointed, but never missed a game, and went to most practices (except when he was sick).

Then, the chance that no one could have expected. The team made it to the playoffs!! To my knowledge, as vast as it is about the team and the sport, this team had never made it to the playoffs. This was his chance? One of the coaches told him, "Hey, the doctor said you couldn't get tackled for two more weeks! This will be the 3rd week!! Are you in?" Ouch!! Ty tells me he doesn't care what he has to do, he's going to play in the playoffs.

After some schedule issues (I was out of town) we finally got the clearance for him to play. He couldn't be more excited. He was nervous, and landed on it wrong the first practice, but he made it through. There was some secret (man to man) conversation between Hubby and Ty and after that the wrist was no longer an issue.

Talk about drama you could only get from a movie...will he get to play? Won't he? Who will be the new water boy? The ending?? The team lost 35-6...Bummer!! It didn't happen that way in the movie!!

I was proud of him though. So very proud!! He taught me a lot about his spirit through his enthusiasm, and how he can turn things around. He also reminded me that while we watch fathers all over the place lose their minds about their sons in this sport, he truly learned what it was to be part of a team and had fun in the process.

Now...that's my "High Quality H2O Boy"!!

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