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My Best Photos of Pride

It's not the best photo- but I don't think there's a better picture of pride for this guy  in my 15K photo Library!

It’s not the best photo- but I don’t think there’s a better picture of pride for this guy  in my 15K photo Library!

It’s no secret I’m a BIG football fan.  On many occasion during a football film, I will tell whoever is around to listen that, to quote the great Vincent Lombardi, Football IS Life.

I love the game more than any one team- though there was a time I lived and died for the Dallas Cowboys.  I went to school in Irving Texas when I was in Fourth Grade- and caught the fever.  There was a time when I was 9 that I though I would marry Danny White (The Quarterback for Dallas at the time) but as I grew older, I fell hard for Steve Young. I don’t think it would have worked between us though- there’s too much Brooklyn girl in me! I set my sights on Brett Farve and pretty much still have a little crush on him.  So I guess my love of the game is very much entwined with my school girl crushes on the cuties who play it!
 
Things here in NYC are all about the BIG game this week! I am ashamed to say, but I have not made my way to Superbowl Boulevard. The trains into the city were down the afternoon I wanted to go- and right now- it’s just too darn cold. So, I have been getting into the Big game spirit by pinning Superbowl snack recipes and perfecting my world famous chili recipe.
 
I did get to enjoy one Football ceremony that I know I will remember forever- the awards ceremony for Ryan’s High School football team. Now, if you’ve been following by journey as a football mama, you know that my heart bursts with the amount of work and effort Ryan puts into playing. He never played football before High School- but decided he would give it a try.  To get him ready, I enrolled him in a full contact camp- I wanted to make sure he knew what it felt like to get hit before he tried out for the team.  He had an awesome coach who put him in as a linebacker and actually pushed him through the plays, making sure he got full contact. It wasn’t easy watching him get creamed- but he was so determined to learn how to do this- it gave me the strength – and I hid my fear my cheering him on from the sidelines.
 
These first tackles must have been so rough for him- but a great coach and a drive to learn got him back up each time he got knocked down!

These first tackles must have been so rough for him- but a great coach and a drive to learn got him back up each time he got knocked down!

He made the team and never missed a practice. The kid never says no to anything the coach asks of him- and will happily go in for whatever play- he’s just happy to be there. He’s a mellow, happy unflappable kid.  I can’t believe how much he has grown in the two seasons he’s been playing!  The ouch of watching my little boy grow up has been eased a bit by seeing the terrific young man he has become.

The Rookie 2012
2 Season Veteran 2013

We attended the awards dinner to share a fun night with the other families and support the team.  Ryan didn’t expect any special award.  There are no “participation awards” – just very few for a select number of players. Because he does not play first string- and there are so many boys on his team that have been doing this for years and are extremely talented, we knew he wasn’t gong to be called up .  Well, I wish I could make you feel the bursting in my heart when they started talking about “the kid – who always has a smile- always gives 100% – always does what is asked of him and never questions if it is a big play or a small one- he’s in and will give it his best”. It was MY kid! And what was so awesome is that he was recognized for working so hard- we always tell he we see it- but for him to know that other people see it and respect it as well- that may just be one of the most important things he’ll learn this year- Will he go to college playing Football? Most likely not. But- will he put that little extra effort in because that plaque on his wall is concrete proof that hard work does not go unnoticed? I’d like to think so. Football IS life. Even if you don’t play it- there are just so many lesson in it.

And that’s why I LOVE football.

 

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