Smalltown football. There’s just nothing else like it. I think there may even be a movie or two about it.
Friday night started the season for this year, and of course, we were there in our new Season Ticket Seats. Some things have changed since I was a student; the bleachers are twice their size, and the fans gesture ”number 1″ during the school song. But other things are the same; I still know the words to that song, and the cheerleaders dance the same dance. The little kids run around in football jerseys and cheerleading uniforms, and parents watch both their kids and the Eagles hoping neither gets injured.
I thought that when the kids grew out of toddlerhood, these kinds of activities would be more manageable. They would be able to entertain themselves or maybe even watch the activity we were attending. But, in some ways it’s not working out like that. My 8-year-old wants to wander the football stands with her friends, and check in every so often when she needs money for gatorade and ring pops. My 6-year-old wants to actually play football, either in front of the stands, underneath the stands, or behind the stands. My 3-year-old wants the cheerleaders to throw him one of those little footballs, and does not understand why we have to wait for a touchdown to even have the opportunity to MAYBE catch one of those little treasures. All of this, while my husband and I try to have complete conversations with our own friends. Social Multi-tasking. That’s what I call it, but I’d like to know if I’m following the rules.
What is the protocol for kid wandering and behavior at the football games? I keep a pretty close eye on mine, but feel like a helicopter mom in the process.
Despite all the spastic coming and going, there were a few moments where we all were taken in by the Magic of Friday Night. My 8-year-old started mimicking the drill team’s choreography. My 6-year-old watched in amazement as a football player took off his helmet and picked up his drumsticks to march with the band. And, my 3-year old snuggled in my lap during the 4th quarter, wishing hard for one of those little footballs. We have at least a million more Friday Nights in our future, and I’m looking forward to all of them; the kids are too, already plotting against me.