What I choose to dwell on will dominate my thoughts, emotions, and responses. So instead of hopping on the roller coaster of preseason camp, I journal, I take a walk, I grab coffee with a girlfriend, and I talk about only positive things.
I have always found it frustrating to not get to where I want to be, with new friends, with the new house, in the new community, immediately. I also fall victim to always comparing my brand new beginning to the well developed ending that just occurred. I’ve learned that I need to be patient and realistic. It takes time to get where I would like to be, usually years.
And in a world, a culture, and an industry where women feel obligated to give until they break, I think that’s the best example of what any one should be, not just a head coach’s wife.
I didn’t know Coach’s role would change unexpectedly and shake up our lives drastically. But some of you had experienced that before.
I didn’t know that we would watch each sport shut down, one-by-one. But even when the stadiums emptied, there you were.
Some lost seasons. Some lost jobs. Many wrestled with their mental health and moves and the new normal. But we didn’t face these things alone. But we figured it out together.
The sideline is also where athletes rest and hydrate in preparation for the next series. It’s the place where teammates encourage each other and minor injuries are tended. The sideline is a tremendously important place on game day. But most people only see value in the field.
Living on mission will require time on the sidelines on game day
But the truth is, no one bad play, no one unexpected loss, not even one loud heckler in the stands will be able to close a door that is Divinely yours. Along that same line, no clawing, scratching, or forcing will open one that isn’t meant for you.
It wasn’t that bad early in his career. But, several years ago we went through a couple of tough seasons and were (ahem) “not rehired.” That event took a toll on me I never would have anticipated. Now, I have to be very intentional about managing fear and anxiety during the season – even if the season is going well.
These are stories we hear every year —
Coaches developing chronic panic attacks. Players suffering from depression or anxiety. Coaches becoming physically ill due to mental distress. Coaches and players struggling to navigate online criticism.
It’s okay if you’re mourning the loss of something you’ve worked really hard for (like so many of our coaches are currently doing). You’re allowed to mourn.
So if my peace is dependent upon my own performance, my own success, my own character, my own children, my own circumstances, then I will NEVER FIND IT. Because none of those things will ever be up to par. None of those things will ever feel ENOUGH.
Force the wheel of chaotic schedules and unending stress to halt. Whether you vacation away from town or have a small stay-cation, find a moment to let the world around you continue without your family needing to be involved.
We do all that we can to prepare, knowing that when the storm finally arrives, all bets are off.
We put our worth in what we do, our accomplishments, and the success of our commitments, instead of the things that actually matter. When we do this, we begin to miss what life is actually about and where true value comes from. We worship being busy, and eventually that will come to haunt us in one way or another.
One day, the busyness will start to settle down and we will look back and wonder how we did it all. And we will miss the days when we had exactly 12 minutes to scarf down a dinner before we had to leave the house.
What this verse made clear to me was that the true definition of home isn’t a physical place.
It’s not the house that I painstakingly decorated and kept clean(ish).
It’s not the school whose colors I put on week after week and cheer for until I lose my voice.
It’s not the town where I had all three of my babies, and where we have our favorite restaurants, our church, and friends that have become family.