Monday, April 07, 2008

A pause on the path of a long, winding road

By the time you read this, I'll probably either be happier than a junebug on a peach tree, as we Kansas natives say, or on my fourth hankie and possibly tilting off a few bucks at the virtual poker tables.
I am writing this Sunday night, 24 hours before possibly the biggest game of my life as a Kansas graduate and die-hard fan.
I will post it just as I leave work and prepare for the game against Memphis.
I want nothing more than the game to just get here.
Except, wait a minute.
Andie pulled herself up on the high chair for the first time Saturday. She's not walking yet, but she's getting there. She might make it by her first birthday, which, amazingly, is less than two months away.
Allie is watching Andie and pulling herself up and trying it herself. That's how things work in their relationship. She lets Andie be the daring one, try it out, see if it's feasible, and then when Andie only bonks her head on our hardwood floors and survives, Allie gives it a try. It won't be long now before they're walking.
I remember when Jayden was pulling himself up on the couch and starting to make tentative steps, one shuffle, then a step, along to the fireplace. Now he's steaming through Taco Bell and trying to push open a door that weighs three times as much as he does. And he's succeeding.
I just recently posted about how damn hard it is at times with Jayden, who has ratcheted up the whiny pitch in his voice the last few days, and the girls, and there are times I just want to get to the next step.
I just want the ball to tip off.
But my life already seems to be at warp speed now anyway, as if I was running one of my 5Ks (well, sort of), and I caught myself when I was just wishing for the game to get here already.
You remember what Christmas Eve was like, right?
Remember the presents?
Or the anticipation?
What was more fun?
I don't remember what I got for Christmas, except for the one year we got an Atari 2600, and we spent three days straight playing it, even my parents.
But I remember the night before, sitting in the room, watching the clock melt from 3:02 to 3:03 a.m. while reading "The Great Brain."
I don't remember what was so important the other day that I'd rather be somewhere else other than playing peek-a-boo with my girls. I feel that way all the time, especially after the tough days that sparked the post.
Yet I remember Allie's giggles from my tickles the other day.
I remember the losses from past seasons — and Kansas has had more than our share in the tournament, believe me — but the pain from those losses are buried beneath many good memories of the seasons gone by.
I feel lucky to be a Jayhawk.
I feel lucky to be a father of twins and a toddler.
Every season is a long, winding hike down life's path. At times you just want to get to next checkpoint. At times you forget to enjoy the trail along the way.
I am trying to enjoy today's trail before we play for the national championship. The anticipation is painful. It is also wonderful.
Sure, I want them to win. I want that more than anything else today.
But when the buzzer sounds, and the elation or the pain swells up inside, I'll try to tell myself that emotions are temporary.
Memories are forever.
That's why I posted this now.
So I can look at it after the game.
And before I get up at 3 a.m. to feed one of the twins.


Mondogarage said...

Good Luck to the Jayhawks -- I was soooo hoping it would have been a Kansas/Texas final game, but it was not to be.

You've done the Big 12 proud, no doubt, and I'll be pulling for you.

kurokitty said...

Now that was a good game. Congrats for the win!