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Under the Friday Night Lights

Tonight is the last football game of the season for our high school. That really just hit me today. We’ve been floating along in this new routine for a couple of months. I think I just now grasped this is our last week of this particular routine.

It’s been awesome – watching the teams, watching my girlie cheer. Everything I’d hoped for her in this experience has been realized. There’s been  ups and downs – our team isn’t the best – and there has, of course, been drama. You can’t put thirty girls on a team and expect there to not be drama. But she’s part of the school culture, part of the Friday night legacy. She’s a cheerleader.

Watching her, and the teams, every week, has brought back so many memories. My family spent every fall Friday night at a high school football field from the time my brother was a Sophomore in high school until my youngest sister graduated. There’s a community – the students, the parents, the rowdy crowd, the band, the football players, coaches, the cheerleaders, the younger and the older siblings. I love being part of that again, even if I’m frequently reminded I’m now just the mom.

Watching her cheer, watching her teammates, watching the football players, you can forget they’re just kids after all. They seem larger than life out there. But then the DJ will play some music, and you see them start to dance a bit, or a helmet comes off and you recall just how young they are, that they have so much life ahead of them.

But tonight is the last game of the season for her freshman year. I’m planning on trying to just take it in.

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