It is not very often that I am truly surprised. I think I have a sense of when something is going on! But yesterday I was truly blindsided! My son’s Junior High School Football Team , Jacob Hespeler Secondary School, surprised me totally yesterday. What a fine group of kids!
So let’s start at the beginning shall we. Some of you know and some of you may not know…But January of 2011 I was diagnosed with Breast Cancer. My story is well documented on this blog. But I am well now and back to work thanks to some terrific doctors and surgeons and specialists. I have been back to work full time for just under two years. It was a physical and emotional struggle, but I feel like I came out the other side of Cancer as a stronger person. But, human nature being what it is, you get caught up in the business of everyday life and it’s not that you forget your struggle but you put it on the back burner.
And then yesterday happens and you are reminded that you did it and some people don’t forget that you did it and they are very proud of you for surviving your struggle! Enter my son Jared and his friend Brandon…
As you know, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and what my son and his friend initiated for yesterday’s game made me so proud and humbled. Many football teams across North America, be it the NFL right down to the young kids playing at entry level football, drape themselves in breast cancer pink to support the cause. Well yesterday, the JHSS Junior Football team took it a step further and each member of the team placed a strip of pink tape down the center of their helmet and each child wrote my name on their helmet. All 38 kids!
So I get to the field and was standing and chatting with Brandon’s dad, Corey. Corey asked me if I could see the kids’ helmets. I said that I could and they all had pink tape down the back of the helmets. He then asked if I could see what was written on them. I said that I could not. It was then that he told me that my name was on each helmet. I can hardly describe how I felt. It was like someone had punched me in the gut. It took my breath away and had immediate tears in my eyes. I was being remembered for my struggle and honoured in such a precious way. I can honestly say it is one of those moments as a parent that you are truly prouder than proud of your child! The fact that he and Brandon initiated this and that each kid on that team embraced the idea and demonstrated their support. I will never forget that moment for the rest of my life. I immediately made my way over to the players side of the field to seek out Jared and Brandon and gave them a huge hug! Once I had thanked them individually, i went back to my seat feeling a little numb! But I felt ALIVE! And so proud of myself in this special moment. I. DID.IT. I felt good!
At the end of the game, which we won (WOOP, WOOP), I made it over to the team and thanked them all. You guys are a great group of kids. Your parents should be proud of you all!