I write this post chewing on a bit of humble pie (it's dry, tastes like chicken). Not being a "sportish" family we were a little shocked when the babe of the family asked to play tackle football. I just might have had a bit of an attitude about the whole business...
Of course a normal Amberish story would not be complete without it ending in me being wrong, eating the pie and blogging about it later..so here you go.
My ode to our 2011 Snohomish 8/9 Panther Red football season..
10 Things I learned while spending HOURS watching my sweet boy play football. (catchy title!)
10. You're only as strong as your offensive line. (the person/people who have your back)
My boy is QB, while you might think this lofty title means the show is all about you, nothing really could be further from the truth. If your o-line is not blocking for you, you can't complete the pass. PERIOD. It does not matter how stinking good you think you are.
Find your strong peeps, take care of them, hold them close and let them know you would be nothing without them.
9. People on the sidelines can be distracting..and should not define who you truly are.
You know those times when all the world seems perfect?? Your team is up 24-zip, you get 500 comments on your blog post, your facebook fan page suddenly hits 5 bazillion fans for no good reason other than you being awesome...
Don't let it go to the noggin.. because soon...
You will screw up (because we all do), maybe even lose the entire game for the team and those same people that left the 500 comments will be GONE or worse talking smack from the side-lines..oh yes, you will wish they were gone.
Either way it's distracting and if we focus on that chatter (good and bad) too much it will make you jaded. This ruins your game and your art.
Do your job and stay true to who The Creator made you to be. Shut out the noise.
8. Sometimes Ref's make really bad calls and you just have to GET OVER IT.
(life is not fair)
We all have our stories of injustice.
Yes, I know that one competitor should have NEVER landed that huge account with the super fancy, special, just plain AWESOME client..yes, you should have gotten it!
But you didn't...and now you have two choices.
Move on, drop your shoulder, plow through it, get the next job.
Nothing good comes from arguing with the ref..bitterness is a ugly little mess that has never served anyone much good.
7. Watch the film from your game. (learn from your mistakes)
Every once in a while I think about the one that got away. In fact, for the first six months after, that's all I could think about..to the point of paralyzing fear.
Now when I think about it, I think about how I'm NOT ever going to make that same mistake again, I use that moment to push me forward..to urge me past that fear.
There is nothing wrong with failure or mistakes, that means you were out there playing the game in the first place. Identify what you did wrong, fix the problem, bank it and move forward.
6. Take a knee. (empathy)
Ok, I'm not going to lie here..sometimes there is this one kid on the opposing team that we can not for theloveofpete stop. He runs in like 60 touchdowns, catches every pass, makes 10 interceptions..seriously the kid is a beast.
I want him destroyed.
Then he gets hurt and my mommy heart suddenly kicks in and I personally want to run out on the field and make sure he is ok. Our team, in respect takes a knee and waits while he is escorted off of the field.
We should not rejoice in others pain or failure, yes even when that person might have even had it coming to them...even when secretly (or not so secretly) we want them to fail.
Take the high road, take a knee and just for a second imagine walking for a few days in their shoes.
5. Listen to your coach. (respect authority)
I wish this was a easy one for me..like I wish I could sit here and write all about how respecting people placed in authority over me is like second nature.. um no.
Actually the first thought that comes to mind is.."who do you think YOU are telling me what to do!"
A few weeks ago a very dear friend sat me down and gave me a little "coaching".. sometimes an outside perspective is the exact coaching we need. It's amazing how much we blind ourselves to our own imperfections..
Your close family and friends only want the best for you. When you are corrected, reprimanded or made to run 10 laps its not because the coach hates you. No, it's because they see how much better you can be, you need pushing..a little tweak here and there..they only want the best you.
Don't bristle, embrace it.
4. Sacrifice. (sacrifice)
Nothing good comes easy.
Not my marriage.
Not my relationship with my Maker.
Not raising children.
Not owning a successful business.
Not cultivating healthy relationships.
It's hard work, am I willing to make sacrifices for it?
3. DON'T GIVE UP. (there is always hope..always)
Did you know that Steve Jobs basically was kicked out of Apple, had one major fail of a new computer called NeXt and had an unheard of failed company by the name of Pixar Studios.
While NeXT ended up going by the way side, Pixar and Apple did not. We all know the rest of THAT story (hold on, I need to answer my iphone, while watching Toy Story 3 on my Mac Book Pro).
We pretty much have all been faced with that dark hour.
Remember when you are at the bottom the only place you have to go is up.
2. Little plays turn into big plays. (inch by inch)
If you are losing only one pound a week..in one year that is 52 pounds.
Sometimes we get caught up in the "go big or go home" mentality...mostly that just leaves us..well going home.
Real life is daily, it's a grind, even if we are only gaining four or five yards at a time, it's forward motion..
Small victories turn into one heck of a celebration at the end.
Pretty soon you will be looking back across the field not even realizing how far you really have come.
1. There is no "I" in team. (cliche, but true)
We are a bit of a narcissistic bunch are we not?? We tend to be self absorbed, facebook, twitter and yes even blogging only bring out that notion more (well in me anyways).
Life is sooo much bigger than just me...and I think it is so much sweeter when I step outside of myself..open up..live with others..work with others.
Life was not meant to be lived alone. We were made for community, we need each other. We need real..physical relationships..depth.
Life is getting out on the field with your peeps, getting dirty, losing, winning, celebrating.
To end my inspirational sports post..I will leave you with a much more inspirational sports video..grab a tissue.