So WAYFL (Wausau Area Youth Football League) football season is over. Six weeks went fast. My son Josh is a 7th Grader on the WAYFL Badgers (Hey, we’re WI!) and they went undefeated. 6-0. I am now an official football mom. The back of my PT Cruiser looked like a gym locker – it did NOT smell like a gym locker. Learned where all the pads go in those darn pants. Learned how to keep said darned pants CLEAN(ish). Took the dog – and my daughter – to every Saturday game. Never missed a practice. I did NOT “coach” from the sidelines. I only made a COUPLE of comments about certain refs. I never bugged the coach to play my son more. I DID discuss personal fouls w/my son when one was made, to reinforce respect and sportsmanship. Football teaches listening and focus, memory, teamwork and sportsmanship. Also versatility if you only have 13 players on the team – everyone played at least two postitions.
And I learned a few things about myself and the community:
It’s okay to share a blanket with the enemy. We watched a game in the rain and Tami was freezing and a WAYFL Spartan mom gave her a blanket to wrap up in. When the Badgers scored against the Sartans and Tami cheered, Spartan dad teasingly said they’d have to ask for the blanket back and his wife cracked him one. Blankets are always neutral territory.
Regarding grandparents and cameras: Stay out of the way – unless you see a lens cap still on. Then it’s okay to approach. Always try to observe line of sight.
If you go for coffee – bring back extras for anyone turning blue. United Nations should learn the sharing-coffee trick.
Misery builds comeraderie – nothing like sitting on a cold metal bench freezing in the pouring rain to build solidarity. Huddling together w/perfect strangers (sharing coffee and blankets) dissing the refs beats the heck out of govt & economic whingeing.
Dogs are great icebreakers – but bring potty-bags.
It’s okay to cheer a good play by the other team. It’s not okay to flip off a ref – you will be asked to leave. It’s imperative to speak to son about WHY it’s not okay to flip off the ref. Accidental horse-collars are still a 15-yard penalty – choking the other player is NOT effective defense. And PUNTS have to be announced before, not after.
Moms freak about injuries – no matter whose kid he is.
So now no more football until next fall. Hopefully Josh will opt to play for Horace Mann MS as an 8th Grader, so we can do this all over again. Hey, now that I KNOW how to wash and stuff those pants, I’m golden! And now I can get Tami signed up for figure skating again and go back to freezing my butt off at an ice rink…