I posted once, long ago, about being a football mom.
About seeing the fears realized on the field. And breathing a sigh of relief, while offering up prayers, that it wasn't MY kid out there hurt.
As I've mentioned many, many times before; this is a football household. The guys in this house live and breathe football. For them it isn't a fall sport - it is a year round sport. One that is watched relentlessly during the season and talked about exhaustively for the rest of the year.
Honestly, I'm actually kind of surprised neither one of them has discovered the allure of fantasy football yet....but grateful at the same time.
Our season actually started a couple of weeks ago. We had a game, in intense heat at a VERY uncomfortable field, but then - we were stalled. We had a "bye" week. Which basically means we had a week off.
Then we had the game (that was 2 HOURS AWAY) that was cancelled because of lightening. Twice. Once after we'd already driven out there and the second as we were preparing to drive out there.
And, which,if you are interested, has been re-scheduled for Monday. Let's see what Mother Nature has to dish out on Monday. At this point, I'm expecting a freak snow storm. I seriously don't think we are meant to play this team.
After that, the season began in earnest. Last night was the first home game.
We got to the field early. We found good seats; right at the 50 yard line; and high up enough that I could see over the players on the sidelines. After I was settled in, Hubby abandoned me; as he always does. Apparently, all my questions irritate him.
And then I began to hear the talk around me. How they hoped no one was injured; especially considering we had three games in less than a week due to the multiple re-schedules of the previous game; and how this is such a new team since most of the team graduated last year...this kind of talk brings out the superstitious in me.
We had the opening prayer and the National Anthem and then the game began.
Have I mentioned that Man-Child was voted in as a captain of the team this year? It's a very big honor. So I watched with pride as my boy strode out there with his co-captains to do the coin toss.
I also wept discreetly at the National Anthem; considering the team and the school had decided to honor the victims and the heroes of 9/11 at this game, I was extra weepy.
The boys lined up - prepared to do battle. The first play of the game was underway. For your information, it is very hard to keep an eye on the ball and your child in the huddled mass on the field.
The play was over and there was MY son laying on the field.
At first I thought he was just mad because he messed up his block. He blocks the other guys from getting to our quarterback (See! I HAVE learned a few things in all these years. This is why I don't worry as much about him. Since he never carries the ball, huge boys aren't looking to tackle and maim him...technically, it's his job to tackle and maim OTHER boys; and yes, I worry about those boys too!). So, when I saw him on the field, pounding his fists, I wasn't too worried.
But then he didn't get up.
Then I got a little worried.
But figured it was just a cramp. All the boys suffer from cramps when they play in the heat.
And then the trainer went out. She tried to stretch his muscles. She tried massaging the muscle. Nothing.
Then, in horror, I watched as she assisted my boy off the field.
My only child. My little guy!!
Needless to say, my heart was in my throat - threatening to choke the life out of me.
I fought my way out of the stands to find Hubby at the fence. He had no idea what had happened either.
Neither one of us had seen what had actually happened when all the boys surged forward. We waited, with our eyes glued onto our boy, completely ignoring the game that went relentlessly on after Man-Child had left the field; because as you know, the show must go on.
Finally, one of the coaches called us over. We met the trainer and she informed us that she didn't think it was serious; but it was hard to tell with all his pads. The doctor was with him and she walked us over to where they were.
After a quick examination, the doctor told us it was difficult to tell what was going on with the pads in place, but he didn't think it was serious. Man-Child tried to wave us off the field; because surely 1) us being there meant it was bad or 2) how embarrassing is it to have your parents on the sidelines?
But the doctor wanted us there to reassure us.
At this point, Man-Child had tears rolling down his face. He was SO angry that he'd hurt himself and that he was in pain.
The doctor told us he'd take Man-Child to the locker room and give him a thorough examination and let us know what was going on.
So we waited - it was agonizing. We kept our eyes on the locker room door and not the field.
Finally he came out and told us that he thought it could be a knee sprain or possibly some torn cartilage, but probably nothing major. But he couldn't tell us for sure until he x-rayed the knee....on MONDAY!
My boy was devastated; he couldn't finish out the game and (for now) it is unsure how long he will be out this season...two weeks? Four weeks? No one knows.
Me? Well, I am completely torn up about the fact that he's been injured (in the eight or so years that he's been playing he's never suffered more than a bruise or two and once had the wind knocked out of him-and this is MY baby that we are talking about) and it kills me to know that his might possibly be the last year he'll ever get to play the sport that he loves so much (if he doesn't get a chance in college, this is it) and that he might be out for 2-4 weeks; which is basically the whole season.
I am also eternally grateful that the injury wasn't worse; because it easily could have been...