Every Fall, I renew my wedding vows.

Except, we were married in May.

We don’t have a ceremony, I don’t dress up, and there is little to no obvious fanfare.  It actually happens over the course of about 24 weeks starting in July and going thru December.

Every Football season , I remember what I said yes to 12 years ago.  My Prince Charming popped down on one knee and propped open the ring box.   He said incredibly sweet things like spending the rest of our lives together…and along with his undying love, there were 2 things I should know:  1) he was made to coach football and 2) if we were able to have a little boy someday, he wants a Jr.  I love a guy who offers full disclosure.

God has blessed us with our Jr.  And every Fall, I am okay with recommitting to sharing my husband.  Sure, it would be helpful at times, to have another pair of hands to catch dribbling peas and make bath time happen.  In the not so distant future, when our daughter needs help with math homework during the fall, she’ll more than likely just have to wait till Daddy gets home.

Yet, I am so thankful.  Because my husband coaching football is one continuation of the dreams we had when we were young and naïve and really had no idea of what “two becomes one” means.  I really don’t understand football, but I am thrilled to see him do what he was made to do.  (I have been meaning to checkout “Football for Dummies” from the library.  I think I even did once, but never read it.)

I hate the term “football widow.”  I try not to think of him as not here to help me, but off helping someone else.  The other night he got in unusually late, “tough practice?” I asked.  “Made a few of them run – low grades. Told them I expect better than that” was the explanation.  Touching.  Some of these young men don’t have Dad types at home expecting better, instilling confidence, and providing a good ole fashion wearing out when energy has been misguided for poor choices.  I appreciate that my husband, along with loving football, willingly steps in that gap.  He cares about these kids.  On paper, we are a family of four.  During the fall, a football team fills his heart.

When we married, I hoped for a marriage that would be bigger than just the two of us, and shine a meaningful light to others.  At the time, I didn’t know this meant whistle blowing, “x’s” and “o’s,” and time apart in the Fall.  But I’m learning.  And one of the most valuable lessons?   Fully embrace the person you say “I do” to.  You may not have the same exact dreams, and that’s okay.  Strive to share along with, and participate with those dreams anyway.  There is excitement in watching your spouse, and growing with your spouse, as you watch those dreams fulfilled.  When you dream and cheer one another on, passion and love to grow anew.