Thursday, February 09, 2006


Day 56 OT

GUILT FOR LYING: The emotion I felt driving Kellen to his basketball game Tuesday evening when he asked if I knew what team they were “versing” (his word, not mine) and I told him no, actually, I don’t.

RELIEF: The emotion I felt when he saw the giant mutant blue team walk through the doors (ducking their heads so as not to bump them on the door frame) and he didn’t immediately burst into tears or wet himself.

BIGGER RELIEF: The emotion I felt when the first quarter team lined up and Kellen was NOT guarding the giantest of giant mutant boys, #13. Here’s a visual shot from the last game, in case you missed it:

EMBARRASSMENT: The emotion I felt when Blaine looked over at me during Kellen’s first quarter of play, my fists clenched, and reminded me, “It’s just a game, honey.”

HOPEFULNESS: The emotion I felt when half-time rolled around and our team was actually ahead by four points.

ANXIETY: The emotion I felt when the teams lined up for the third quarter, and Kellen *WAS* guarding giant mutant boy #13.

GRATITUDE: The emotion I felt when the quarter ended and giant mutant boy had not squashed my son flat as a pancake.

EXCITEMENT: The emotion I felt as the minutes ticked down and it looked like our team might win the game.

EMPATHY: The emotion I felt for the little (well, comparatively speaking, anyway) boy on the other team who double dribbled three times in a row and lost the ball each time in the fourth quarter.

EXHILERATION: The emotion I felt when the final buzzer went off and we had WON!!!

SHAME: The emotion I felt when I realized that MY adult inner happy dance was at the expense of the young boys on the blue team, who were now standing to the side, trying manfully not to cry, just like our boys were doing last week when *they* lost.

LIMP WITH RELIEF: The emotion I felt when I realized the game was really and truly over and I could quit holding my breath.

DREAD: The emotion I felt when the coach reminded us that now we are tied with the blue team for first place and will most likely play them again in the championship game. Here we go again!

No wonder I was exhausted by the time we got home that night!

They’re seven, for Pete’s sake. Blaine asked me, “If it’s this bad in elementary school, how are you going to be when he’s playing for a high school championship?” and I replied, “I’m writing a sick-note that day to excuse him from the game…. I just can’t take the pressure.”

I am not a competitive person! We refused to play Pictionary with our neighbors in North Dakota twenty years ago because the wife would continually jab the pencil in my direction and yell “In your FACE!” whenever she drew a better stick figure. I don’t need that kind of tension in my life ---- yet there I sat in the stands, sweaty and anxious, for a 7-yr old basketball game. Soccer didn’t do this to me; neither did baseball. What is it about that round, orange ball that mocks me …. Calling my name …. Heckling me???

Thankfully, I will be out of town and unable to attend Kellen’s game on Saturday. I think a little breather, a little time away from the sport that taunts me so, might be just the thing. Lord knows my cortisol level could use a break.

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