Saturday was the last day of fall sports for our family. Because the previous weekend was a total washout, we had make up games. Stephen (yellow shirt below) had two soccer games instead of the scheduled one (9:30 a.m. & 2:30 p.m.); by the time the last whistle blew, he had scored a total of five goals for the day…quite a “feet” of accomplishment, great punctuation to a season that thankfully saw week-to-week improvement.
In between, Thomas had a noon “pick-up” football game (The “official season“ was over). In spite of it being more a scrimmage than a game, he was FIRED UP because it was the only one they got to play on our school’s campus since sixth grade is still played through the Y (none of his games were “home” games). Thomas had to leave his first basketball practice early in order to make his game–he’s still in the “I can play everything” age of adolescence.
So, yeah, if you noticed game times, we were on the road all day long, Rachel in tow, dutifully playing the cheerleading big sis.
Thomas’ football game started late, so it ran late, and Tad left early with Rach and Stephen to get to the second soccer match of the day. I was left behind to watch the ending of Thomas’ game.
I cannot tell you just how important that proved to be.
He scored a touchdown in their only win of the season. His first ever.
Starting with a wobbly pitchout, he ran his heart out for 60 yards, his eyes never leaving the prize–the coveted endzone which had managed to elude his grasp all season. When I realized that was
MY BABY him on the fly, my heart started racing. As he met each yard marker, my adrenaline coursed in sync with his. My mind loudly but silently pleaded a kind of soul-bartering prayer, a mother-hymn which must amuse the ears of God and cause Satan anxiously, greedily to roll fist in hand…”Please let him make it…PLEASE LET HIM MAKE IT!”
My heart exploded, but not from “mother pride”, nothing like that. I knew what this meant to Thomas. It meant everything to him. It mattered too much. He’s a classic middle child if there is such a thing. To say he loves/adores/relishes being the center of attention, is an understatement. For a moment, he measured up to the Legend that Lives in His Mind. Perhaps the most precious thing about it, was his friends’ reaction. THEY were just as happy for him as I was, as he was himself. They know. Kids “know” whether they realize it or not.
It was a fantastic game for all the guys. For some reason, everyone had “a moment”. The “stars” of their team stepped aside to share the glory. They had nothing to lose so they played with unbridled spirit–after all, their season was officially over, why not try something “new” for fun?
But when the Fat Lady finally sang, it was one heckuva winning number :).
Bigtime Postscript: Glad he had this glorious moment on Saturday, today is the day he bade farewell to four MORE babies. Let’s just say I waited as long as I could because, although I feel his elation when he’s on a “high”, I feel his pain when he’s on a low (he’s sure we ALL feel his passion, good, bad or ugly!). He’s hurtin’ right now :(, but I’m sure in a few hours, all will be good :/.