By Cathy Thurber
I know it’s still early August and we’re in the middle summer, but…..can you hear it?
The smashing pads when they collide. The thud of bodies hitting the ground. The grunts, yells, and joyous cheers when a great play is made.
Yes, my friends. Football is almost here.
I know this because I’m at my son’s football practice every night of the week. Watching them put forth all their effort, throwing their little bodies at huge tackling dummies and then getting up with a huge grin on their face – well, it just makes me smile. They work incredibly hard for over two hours a night, five days a week, getting ready for their first game at the end of August. It is amazing watching boys that usually like to joke and goof around get so focused on a particular sport. They want to do their best and strive to outdo their opponent with all their might. It’s refreshing to watch.
Especially when just a week or so ago all of us football fans were held hostage by the NFL players and owner lockout. We weren’t sure it would end, but we were hopeful. I mean, what would we watch on Sundays during fall? And don’t forget about Monday and Thursday night football! It was frustrating to see all the posturing by those adults both playing in and running the organization. Of course some of the ideas needed to be addressed, that’s for sure….but, it’s a game, boys. A game you get paid very well to play. A game you started out playing when you were 8 or 9 years old. Did you dream of making it to the NFL? Yes! But was it more important to just get out there and play because you loved the game so much? Definitely.
I’m ecstatic that they were able to work out their issues so that our beloved Browns can get back on the field. But, sometimes I wish the players and owners would just take a page from these young boys. Play because you love it, not just because it’s going to keep you in the lifestyle you’ve grown accustomed to.
My son knows he’s not going to make it to the NFL. That’s not even what he wants to do when he grows up. But he plays with his full heart and soul and leaves it all on the field every night at practice. You can’t ask for more than that.