I have been Team Mom for Aiden ever since he started sports – when he was three years old. And I will be damned if I was going to let breast cancer and chemo stop me this year!
Being Team Mom is a lot of work … it’s not just packing snacks and cheering. Aiden has been with the Waldorf Wildcats for 5 years now, and I’ve been Team Mom ever since he started; we’ve been with the same coaches and we’re all like family. I want the coaches to focus on coaching and I always handle all of the other stuff like liaising with the Board of Directors, contacting the parents, collecting paperwork, making sure the boys have what the need, communicating with the parents, snacks, finding volunteers, giving rides to kids to games/practice … It is almost a full-time job in itself, then take that I am actually working a full-time job, a full-time single mom, AND battling cancer…
It was stressful and hard because the chemo felt like it was killing me and I almost didn’t volunteer this year. But honestly, I had been cooped up inside my house for months and I needed to get outside and just do something … ANYTHING other than fight breast cancer and be sick from the chemo.
Plus, Aiden had been seeing me go through so much and I know he was worried about me. I was so sick all of the time and I need to show him that I was ok, mom is fine, and everything is normal.
To say that I was challenged beyond belief this season is an understatement. I had parents I had to track down to collect snack money … now mind you, every week I had to drag myself to the store to purchase snacks … why didn’t I buy them in advance? Well, I’m glad you asked. I give fresh oranges to the team during halftime so I had to buy them the day before the game and slice 30 oranges every week. I also had to package 27 snacks, pack the cooler, get the team book together, usually pick up a kid or two on the way to the game … it was a lot.
Some of the parents were helpful, or at least a little sympathetic, others were just horribly rude – for NO reason. There were a few occasions when I literally almost resigned from my VOLUNTEER position because the parents treated me so nasty and were so rude and I just couldn’t handle it on top of everything else I was going through.
I think because those were the parents who never showed up at practice and they were new to our team and didn’t know me or what I was going through, they only saw me at games and I always had my make-up done, wore a wig and my prosthetic breasts and I looked fine. But honestly, even if I was the epitome of health … being a good/decent human being shouldn’t a hard thing.
But anyway, our Wildcats 11U team had a great season and made it to the championship, but lost in the first round, which happened to be on my birthday. But the boys had a great season and I’m very proud of them.
I volunteered because honestly, I needed something to keep my mind off the cancer and the chemo and I wanted to at least pretend like I am the same me. I drug myself to most practices – four nights/week – since August. I attended every single game and scrimmage, no matter how sick I was.
I can only pray that when Aiden grows up and becomes a man he will look back on this time and know just how much I love him and how no matter what I was going through … I have always and will always put him first.