Number 71

I was a football cheerleader in high school, and while I can’t remember a single chant I can remember learning the game. Our coach was adamant that we girls know the difference between offense and defense. So, while I never found it that exciting, I definitely know enough to follow. My husband is a die-hard Dallas man and we even took in a game for his birthday a few years ago as they played against Carolina. I grew up a Buffalo fan because that’s what my daddy was. Don’t judge me, just know that I am a real pro at supporting a losing team. So there you have it; that’s the extent of my football talk or so I thought.

A few months ago, my family dynamics changed and through some odd circumstances we became custodians of a 17-year-old young man. Having a teenager in the house has taken some getting used to and did not come without some painful transitions for all involved. But four months in, Morgan calls him her big brother, Baby G can say his name, my husband has help with the yard and I have a new title “A Rampant Mom.”

Our new inhabitant is a rising senior and plays football at J. H. Rose High School and he loves it. The boy, I mean, young man, eats, drinks and sleeps football. And to tell you the truth I was very annoyed at this time consuming new hobby of his. I mean, summer heat meant early morning and late evening practices. And since my teenager doesn’t drive, that means more lugging around than I bargained for and a whole new world I wasn’t quite prepared for.

So here’s what I’ve learned so far, male football coaches are very unorganized, at least off the field and should have an administrative person in charge of scheduling. Half the time, I have no clue when practice will be and after speaking to the coach; neither does he. I’ve also learned that teenage boys, stink. I mean, they really stink. I wonder if the water in the showers runs away? Oh yeah, and they eat; a lot. I don’t even make his plate anymore, I just leave him the pot.

But I’ve learned a few things about myself too. We had the pleasure of joining some of our friends for church on Sunday and had dinner after the service. At the restaurant our friends engaged him in conversation about football. “So, what position you play,” they asked and I responded “Defensive End and Offensive Guard.” What number are you,” they asked next and I responded 71. “When’s your next home game,” they egged and I responded August 17th against Havelock.

And then it hit me, wow I am more than a Rampant mom, I am a proud “mom.” Truth is, I can’t wait to see him play and I can’t wait to cheer for him during the game and I can’t wait to see Morgan and Baby G cheering for him too. So look out stands cause a Chocolate Mother is on loose.

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