I love watching my kids play basketball.
Every year, it gets more fun as they grow, change, and all of the kids get better and better at working together as a team.
It’s a culture also, an institution of going to games every Friday night in the dark winter months. Truly, it helps me get through the bitter cold.
The games are about sitting in the same spot on the bleachers with my crew.
It’s texting back and forth about the game Friday night and how it could go down. Throw in there where it will go down, and how the kids need to play it so it doesn’t go down, too! 😉
The singing of our National Anthem, squeaky sneakers on the gym floor, and layups; I love a good fast break!
For a parent, it’s the magic of sharing in every shot, good and bad, taken or not taken.
Parents coach, analyze the mechanics of the game, and psycho-analyze the mind of our player, working through slumps, celebrating streaks. We relive every missed shot, bad foul, and well-played pass.
It’s the warmth of a gym on a subzero Friday night and standing, eating at the concession table cold, hallway pizza during halftime.
The sighing and dying, jumping for joy, and cheering the boys on. Fans yelling before the silence falls at the end of a tight game. The crowd waiting in anticipation of a clinching foul shot, hopeful to be made.
Estimating sectional rankings and total career points, all part of it.
But more than anything, it’s the high school sports team’s role in bringing our village together that sticks in my mind.
How special it is to sit there rooting for the same thing–our kids, and winning, together.
I love the sweetness of sitting shoulder to shoulder on the bleaches with my neighbors. Moving and hopping around as one with every pass up and down the court.
It’s what we talk about in passing at the grocery store, on the street walking the dogs, or commenting on the pictures shared through the community Facebook page.
The sports are a reminder that we are all here, together, in this place. It takes a village to raise a child, something that so many seem to be forgetting about as we hide behind our screens, holed up in our houses.
On a cold, dark winter’s night, there is no better way than to feel alive in a high school gymnasium, as a part of something, bigger than ourselves.
Through thick and thin, as a community, we are cheering the next generation on, helping to launch them into their future.
So here we go, Witches! Sectionals, WE are coming! And, sincerely, thank you. For making my Friday nights in the winter, something that I look forward to, so much!