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When did I become afraid of Football?

Updated: Feb 11, 2021

My son started high school this year and somehow ended up playing with the varsity football team. He’s fifteen, tall, but a little lanky still, and now playing with these fully grown men with facial hair and muscles everywhere.

In my head are all the worries about concussion and permanent injury. He’s been playing lacrosse for years, but even though it’s a helmet sport, it’s not nearly the same level of contact. He also played flag football, which he says, basically isn’t like playing at all.

My reservations calmed slightly when I picked him up after practice. He got in the car, ripped off his mask, sweaty and grinning from ear to ear, and talked my ear off the whole way home about each play he made and the tips the older guys on the team gave him about working out and practicing to help his game.

My fears had to give way to his obvious happiness.

So I asked my dad, who prays for all the grandchildren every morning, to add Wesley to his prayer list. I’m just worried about his safety, I told him.

My dad, an avid sports fan who played in high school and college himself, responded.

“I’ll pray for his safety. But if you don’t mind, I’ll also pray for his toughness and success. I think the reason so many football players are successful in life is that it makes you tough. You learn how to win and to lose. You learn to never give up, even with things are unbearable and discouraging. And you learn teamwork; how to depend on others and to be dependable. I think he will be good and enjoy it, but he shouldn’t think about getting hurt, just doing his best.”

So Dad took me to school again. He’s right. Thanks, Dad. I love you.

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