Monday, July 28, 2008

So Behind!

I'm so behind....Mister has been in camp for 3 days already. Today is day 4 and I just went to my first practice last night. I've been so busy taking care of my sister and her softball career that I haven't had time to focus on Mister.

The first day of camp went well....I think it's taking some time for him to get readjusted to being hit and wearing pads. Not to mention the Texas heat. I think he was all worked up with the anticipation and excitement of actually getting back on the field. Since i'm not the one taking the hits I just wait by the computer to make sure that he's not on the injury report. My sister is here for the summer and I spent the whole day at the softball field with her. I'm glad actually because it kept my mind busy and I didn't worry so much about Mister.

Day godbrother and his wife went out to the morning practice, again I was at the softball field. Saturday's practice was the first "open" practice for the fans and according to the media it was over 3300 people there. So I'm waiting to hear some type of report, and I get the call! He's down again....but only with cramps this time. So apparently during the course of the practice he gave himself and the coaches a scare because he lie in the middle of the field screaming. He's all good. By the second day I was ready to see what was going on at Texans headquarters....instead I was still at the softball field in the heat!

Day 3.....the heat and sore muscles have really kicked in. This was the first practice in full pads....of course his first hand off one of the d-linemen knocks his block off! Other than that he's really doing well. I mean he's getting quite a bit of press because he's trying his hand fullback....we'll see how that works out! I'm not sure how I like this whole fullback thing because i'm so used to him running with the ball, not blocking. KJ had to be at the softball field at 7 am so once again I missed all of the football events for the weekend. No need to worry there's plenty to see during the I'll make my way out to see some action at some point.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Season 2

In the last post I ended at the end of his first season. When the season ended he decided to go home and visit his parents for 3 weeks and then he came to visit me in Kentucky for 3 weeks. At the end of his stay he asked me if I wanted to move with him, at the time we were already planning our wedding but it was still more than a year away. March 1st we returned to his apartment to start our lives in the same city for the first time ever. I finally started a new job just as he began offseason training. As the weeks went by he got stronger and bigger. He was so excited about the upcoming season, he had so much to prove to himself, the coaches, and the fans. The weeks went so quickly and before we knew it, it was time for him to move into the hotel and start training camp.

That Thursday before camp started he packed all of this things and he and I both back out of the driveway at the same time. He was headed to the team's hotel and I was headed to work. That evening I exhausted from the excitement and anticpation of camp starting...which meant the season was near. Finally it was Friday, the first day of camp. I was anxious to hear updates from him just to see how the practices were going. During my ride home from work I was telling my mom how happy I was that he was in camp because the anticipation was going to kill him. When I walked in the door I sat my phone down and immediately starting watching the 6 o'clock news just to see the sports segment.

After the news went off I picked up my phone to call his mom and saw that I missed a text message. I checked the text there it read "I hurt my knee in practice, don't worry I'm on my way to the hospital to get a MRI." I sat there in disbelief, mad that he didn't call and frustrated that there was nothing that I could do. When I called him back he was already in the hospital and about to go in for the MRI. I grilled him like a witness. I wanted to know how it felt, what happened, and who hit him. Once he finished his MRI he called and told me that he wouldn't get the results until the next day.

Saturday around noon he called and told me that he had torn his menicus. So of course I had no clue what that meant. Surgery was already scheduled for Sunday morning at 10. This was the end of his 2007 season. Never in a million years did I ever dream that he would get hurt...he had never been hurt. So now after of months of rehab and now we're married he's ready, and so am I, for the 2008 season. Watching him stand on the sidelines with crutches this season wasn't much fun for me, but it has made me appreciate his opportunity even more. There are so many guys out there that never get the chance and I realize that he is blessed to even be here. So he leaves for camp in exactly one week and four days. I hope that you will join me in this journey that I call His Dream and My Reality!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Welcome to the NFL

Allow me to introduce myself, I'm 23 years and old and I'm married to a professional football player! Technically the NFL is his dream and just my reality, but I have come to love the game. My husband is starting his 3rd year with the same organization...his road to the NFL was a little bumpy. He was an undrafted free agent and the summer before his rookie season was full of surprises. To start things off he left for OTAs (NFL translation = Organized Team Activities) the day after I graduated from undergrad. Just so happened it was Mother's Day! Our entire relationship was long distance so him going away was not a big deal but it was the fear of the unexpected. The first few weeks he would rush off of the phone to study his playbook...that was an adjustment. As the summer progressed he got better, but somebody should have told me about camp. I thought it was going to be like his college camp...this was my when I learned that this is a job and not just a hobby. He was literally at the stadium 12 hours everyday for a month.

When camp wrapped at the end of August I went to visit him just in time to see his last preseason game. This being my first NFL game I was a little nervous, I really didn't know what to expect. I was definitely not prepared for my introduction to the NFL. I got a crash course on players, coaches, groupies, wives, baby mamas, and girlfriends. It's was definitely a different world from our days at the university. I was definitely learning the ropes! After the game on Thursday night we thought that he had done well and I was assuring him that things would work in his favor as cuts were approaching. When they made what we thought were the final cuts on Friday, we were safe. With cuts over I thought that he could just get comfortable with his new organization and enjoy the excitement of officially being a NFL player. Little did I know that when he would return from practice on Saturday morning there would be news of another cut.

Sunday morning had now been deemed the official final cut day. We woke up and got dressed for church and we're just wasting time till it was time to leave when his phone rang. I just sat there and he answered the phone, sure enough it was someone from the team calling to tell him that the GM (translation = General Manager) wanted to meet with and him and to bring his playbook. There was nothing that I could say to him or to anyone else to help him. He walked out of the hotel with a sad look on his face...I had no clue as to what would happen now. I thought that his dream of playing in the NFL was over. So about 30 minutes later in he comes, he's calm and I'm shocked. He said that the coach said that they liked him but didn't want to start the season with all rookies in his position. So they had decided to bring in a veteran and put my hubby on the practice squad (translation = scout team). Later I learned that the veteran the team brought in to replace my guy was a former Heisman trophy winner. This news was discouraging to me but not to my husband.

So the regular season begins and of course I go to the game, trying to be supportive. My husband didn't even touch the field, he was dressed in the team's warm ups and was basically a sideline cheerleader. I'm trying to keep a positive outlook and keep him encouraged but I wondered how long this "practice squad" thing would last. Twelve weeks later he gets another call from the organization. This time it was good news, he was being signed back to the active roster on Friday and that Sunday would be his rookie debut! I was in Kentucky living with my parents and couldn't get a flight at a decent rate in such short notice. Ultimately, I missed his first game! I was so excited for him, I was just happy that he would finally get to fulfill his dream. His mom called me from the stadium that Sunday morning as she walked in and said "we are finally here". For the next couple of weeks he would be a special team specialist, getting most of his p.t. (translation = playing time) on special teams.

The last 2 games of the season were the first time that he would see any action at his position. Christmas Eve 2006 his team went into that game as a definite underdog. He had a breakout game, to hear the commentators call his name was just phenomenal! It was a great game with a great win against the team that would go on to be the Super Bowl champs. Going into the last game of the season he knew that he would be getting a lot of playing time. We are Christians and we believe that God works in mysterious ways. I was running late to the game and missed the first series and when I got there he was already in the game. So the entire game I wondered if he had gotten the start. That game he was named the player of the game and I would later find out that he didn't get the start. It was New Year's Eve and we had to celebrate because we were glad that he ended the season on a positive note.

This post has gotten so long, I'll bring you up to date in the next post.