Fight Hard, My Brothers

On my way to my first high school football game of my high school years in which I will not be on the field with my brothers – my family.

This past month has been one of the hardest times of my life with learning to let go of something I love so dearly. Going through my first days of practice in that 7th grade football locker room still burns in my mind. Those were the days I began to focus more on what I could do for my family…my teammates…my brothers.

That burning became a passion for what I had been longing for…brothers that would fight by my side and not back down – and I for them. Over the four years I spent in football, the bond grew stronger – sometimes even stronger than family.

At the point going into my junior season where a decision had to be made between three great things that bring me so much joy, I wasn’t ready…not ready for the shock of how different it would be without being there with my brothers. I constantly prayed for a definitive answer, but heard nothing.

When the day had come when I had to choose once and for all, it hit me…it hit me hard.

God wanted me to praise Him by using the two wonderful talents that He had given me – that of music and writing. There was just not room for a third

Time stood still as I walked into my coach’s office…very, very unready for just what I was about to do. As I talked with my coach, there was only one question rolling through my head:  How can I leave?

With great sorrow in my heart, I informed Coach of my situation. One thing he said to me as I was telling him was that he was proud of me…proud that I came in and told him like a man…a MAN. As I was shedding tear after tear, this man I had come to see like another father to me called me a man while I was sitting there blubbering through it all.

At that moment, I knew that there was no way he would let me go on any but the best terms. As I walked out of the head coach’s office, I went straight to my positions coach and thanked him for everything. He asked me what was wrong and I simply told him that I had to make a choice and I would not be playing football this season. He simply said, “OK,” with a saddened expression on his face. He told me to let him know if I ever needed anything.

As my brothers go out to face the Guthrie Bluejays tonight, I want to say that I love you all. I will be there every time you step onto that field.  And I will scream my heart out for you all.

Play hard tonight, my brothers. Don’t worry about the next game…or the next.

Focus on the challenge in front of you and believe that, no matter the challenge, they cannot break the bond between you. Fight for your families tonight, men. Push through every block and every resistance. I know that you can make what most seem to think impossible – possible.

Fight hard. Push hard. Win big.

In all you do, give God the glory!

I love you all, men.