When I admit I enjoy watching football, other people’s reactions (usually other women’s) always amuse me. It didn’t always elicit that emotion — I used to feel embarrassed or not “girly” enough or something when the eyes widened and the incredulous “You do?!?!” rolled off tongues. With every disbelieving, less than positive reaction, I began to mull over my enjoyment of this activity in my head (After all – analyzing is what I do best! 🙂 ), and I came to some interesting conclusions.
I must blame my ability to watch, enjoy, and actually engage in the sport of football on my father. As the oldest of three girls, I was (informally) selected to be my dad’s football watching buddy on Sunday afternoons. Trust me when I tell you my dad is a saint. Case in point our usual Sunday conversation:
Jessica: That guy looks nice. Is he?
Daddy: Um, sure?
Jessica: Is he married? Does he have kids? Is he a Christian? Did he go to college? Where does he live? What’s he really like?
Daddy: Um…he just threw for 3 touchdowns and 400 yards this game.
Jessica: Well, yes, but what type of person is he?
Daddy: Ummm…so, let’s review this team’s defensive strategy…how do you think they are doing?
Yep – that’s what football watching with your oldest daughter sounds like — and even though he did teach me strategy, how many yards each penalty cost, and the names of many a famous football star — I still wonder who’s really behind the helmet most of the time 🙂
Anyways, my love for football was cultivated at a young age, and it still continues today. Whereas my dad enjoyed the NFL (Go Bengals!), my husband is an avid college football fan (Sic ’em, Bears!) and I often tell him that he has my dad to thank that I will go out, eat pizza, and watch football as a date night.
Since I started this blog, I’ve been particular in trying to notice little things – everyday happenings — that make my life extraordinary. One Saturday after a loooonnnngggg day of college football watching, I realized that football was one of those things, as in I truly felt like it made my life better, even as “everyday” as it is. I couldn’t help but wonder why, as I do enjoy the game, but I’m certainly not devastated to get my Saturdays back in the spring.
Once I pondered, the reason came to me almost too easily — watching football to me is synonymous with spending one on one time with my daddy. Don’t misunderstand and think we sat in front of the TV all the time — there were plenty of daddy/daughter dates, camping trips, and basketball games — but football was my dad and I’s special connection. My mom and both of my sisters didn’t know the difference between a first down or a touchdown, the Colts or the Cowboys, but my dad and I did.
As this newfound reasoning resonated, clarity abounded: quality time is my love language, and even if he didn’t realize it, my dad fulfilled that need when he took time to patiently answer my questions, let me watch games with him, and update me on all the stats Monday morning. To me, all of these simple acts were an expression of his love for me and a validation of how special I must be to him to have the honor of being his football watching buddy.
I can’t help but think this revelation right here is one of the reasons I started this blog. Because isn’t this what embracing your extraordinary everyday is all about? It’s about finding those things in life that make each day special, unique, extraordinary — to you.
Maybe it’s not football for you — but there’s something else seemingly simple that makes your everyday, extra special. Maybe it’s a place that you always meet a friend for coffee, maybe its a certain drink or snack that reminds you of someone you love, maybe it is, like me, an activity that you always do with a certain person — whatever it is, embrace it! Revel in the feeling that little things are significant, that small deeds add up to great ones, and that even the tiniest act can cause a ripple affect, and make your everyday extraordinary, even if just to you.
And once you’ve basked in that feeling a while — think about it from the other side — what do you do to make others’ day extraordinary? I’m sure my dad had no idea that watching a sport he enjoyed brought love and companionship into his daughter’s life, but it did, and it still does years later as I enjoy talking about football and real life with my dad. What can you do today to create that memory, that joyful, smile inducing feeling to someone else?
Here’s to making everyday, extraordinary AND to recognizing and celebrating that it’s the the littlest things in life that end up making the biggest difference.
What does this post make you think about? What’s making your everyday, extraordinary lately? Please share in the comments 🙂
P.S. This post is dedicated to my dad who is celebrating his birthday next week– Happy birthday and thanks for being patient with your eldest, Daddy. You’ll never know how much those hours of simply watching football meant to me. I love you!