Football is a Line-Crossing Game

Football is a Line-Crossing Game

Lines. Football is a game with a whole lot of them: yard lines, sidelines, scrimmage lines, goal lines – even invisible lines inside planes that need breaking.

It’s a demanding game, and for coaches’ wives, it’s especially hard sometimes to know where we fall. Somewhere behind the lines -- forgotten, it feels like on many a day.

It’s so easy to get caught up in some line-crossing games of our own. We draw mental ones in the sand -- which our coaches inevitably slide right through, missing piano recitals, soccer games, bedtimes, and important dates. Start keeping score – running tallies in your head – and those tiny little notches can bleed a marriage dry.

So, I’ve learned to put my energy into focusing on the lines of least resistance. The ones that keep me eagerly (but not angrily) waiting for him to come home to me after his football duties are done.


The lines he drops me in texts throughout the day, just to say he loves me.

The lines scored on his forehead from trying to balance all the worry and love he carries for me.

The smile lines etched at his mouth and the creased ones around his eyes when he spots me in the stands from the 50-yard line before games.

The broad lines of his shoulders as he paces the field beneath Friday night lights.

The tan lines on his skin when he strips off his sweat-lined shirt and the three-striped or swoosh-riding hemline of his shorts at the end of the day, and I read between the lines… and watch the firm line of his mouth turn into a curve that sets everything straight between us both.

Bottom line is –

Right down the line, it’s been him and me. And football. Forever and ever, Amen.


Heather teaches high school English at the same school her husband coaches football. They have twin nine-year-old boys and two adult daughters.
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