Go Team!

The best youth basketball program in Butts Country, Georgia happens to be the team my grandson is on. I have supported all his endeavors since he was born as a dutiful grandma and now it is time to add this dynamic game to my agenda. He always liked to stay with me when he was a child. He preferred vacations at my house to going somewhere far away with his parents. You could say that we are very close. I would take him here and there to amuse him—whatever he wanted from ice cream, a movie, a video arcade, or a day in the park. I would pack a picnic lunch of his favorite items. He loved fried chicken, potato salad, chocolate chip cookies, and angel food cake. I would vary it a bit to give him a new taste experience. I would let him cook with me in the kitchen. We always had fun.

I worried that he should have spent more time with his friends riding bikes or playing softball in a nearby field. I wonder why his father didn’t encourage him more. I suppose he tried but the kid liked to limit his pastimes. Over the years, I noticed that he did go swimming in other children’s pools and they would go for a hotdog together now and then. I felt better about his time with me. Now that he is a teen, our relationship is taking on a different dimension.

We share his love of basketball for one thing. This came on all of a sudden one year and I was pleased as punch. He soon found the youth program and started to make an entirely new group of friends. But grandma always came first, he said. He would never miss at least one day a week at my house, even if practice demanded his full attention, not to mention his studies at school.

One day I came late as I had an appointment, but I did make it in time to see him running back and forth on the floor. He was a lithe creature and I admired his talent. There was only one problem. That day I noticed he was wearing an ankle brace. I couldn’t wait to ask if he had been injured after the game. “No, gran,” he responded quickly so I would stop worrying. “It is for extra support. A lot of people wear them after they were talked about on a popular blog called Baller’s Guide. It helps my performance.” I let out a sigh of relief.

I soon learned the rules of the game and the names of the players. I learned about dribbling and the various violations. I even watched college and professional basketball with him on TV, especially during playoffs. I know the meaning of March Madness for sure. I started attending his games to spur him on. I sat with the various mothers and fathers, and a few assorted grandparents. We all had a lot in common.