This post was originally shared on January 18, 2015.
First, and always, "GO PACK GO!"
Secondly, along with teachings from strong women like e.e. Cumming, Jane Austen, Maya Angelou, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, my mother, grandmother, teachers, friends and mentors, I owe most of who I am today to the Green Bay Packers, with help from a noisy, and wonderful cheesehead couple with whom taught me everything I need to know about being a first round draft pick in Future Mrs NFL.
Although, as this post is being written, in day two of "Daily Dose", I must confess my love for football, in general, is being put to the test. While, win or lose, SuperBowl or Puppy Bowl, my feelings toward the Packers will remain strong, there is a solid pit of disappointment and anger in their loss today.
More importantly, I love the Green Bay Packers for allowing me to be the person I am on Sunday afternoons, and some occasional Monday and Thursday Nights throughout the season. This person is dedicated, strong, confident, powerful, optimistic, cheerful, and free! Not that I'm not those things on an average day, but in this scenario, surrounded by others who are drawn together, without any other affiliation besides their love for the Packers, we are a community.
People always ask me, "How do you do it in New York? How do you remain so cheerful at work?"
It's simple, you spend time with others who have a common interest, in our chance, our NFL team. I can't take all the credit for this wisdom. I'd like to fully put all blame for my Packer-ness on my college roommate and her husband. Our first years in New York were difficult, each living in different parts of the city, busy with jobs we didn't love and little time to be together. One Sunday, I was invited to this little bar "down town". Not knowing where I was headed, usually just focused on getting to and from work safely, I put the address in my phone and agreed to meet them to "watch football".
With no formal NFL affiliation, and a childhood in Connecticut, my allegiance wavered from the team to team, following the cutest players, (DUH!). I didn't know much about the sport but was instantly drawn to the dedication of the other Packer fans in this small Irish Pub on 14th Street. Everyone seemed to know the players by name, and were almost as physically into the game as the team. I was in awe. I can't tell whether I spent my time watching the actually game being played, or studying the fans in their own sectioned off room in the back. Every thing about it was enticing, not to mention my future hubby, Clay Matthews. (He's mine. Back off!)
From that very first day, to the game that just ended, my life has been changed. For that three to sometimes twelve hour period that we are together, we are united. As fans, such as my lovely cheesehead couple, leave and move on to different parts of the world, still Skyping during games, new friends are added, and with that my knowledge of the game grows. I can't say I'm ready to take Erin Andrews position yet, I have been known to rock a side braid. I am more confident of the friendships I've made in my years as a Green Bay Packer fan, than I am over my skills as a defensive coordinator. And for me, that's what's important. I'd rather scream, cry, lash out, yell, curse, and jump with that group of fans than anyone else in the entire world.
Thank you Green Bay Packers, for being an excellent example of what friendship means, sticking together through win and loss, holding each other up when life throws you down.
Thank you for giving me a reason to push through the tough weeks with hope of seeing what's to come.
Thank you for providing me a home in a city that sometimes feels just a little too big and a little too far away from home.
And thank you for a legacy I can't wait to share with my future family!
To a wonderful season, and even better friends! GO PACK GO!
(PS: I'm still a little angry about today's loss.)