My wife suggested that we leave the house and the boarded up kitchen door and go to Andersonville for an outdoor festival. I debated over going. A part of me almost felt like I should stay at home, even on Fathers day, and suffer until the damaged door from the burglary was repaired. And another part of me was just ready to let go and move on. So the four of us went to the festival.
Andersonville is one of the gay sections of the city, so it was not surprising for us to see a group of cheerleaders… that were mostly men dressed in skirts and V neck sweaters. While walking past the kiosks, Ry noticed a basketball court sponsored by Team USA basketball and State Farm,(our home insurance provider). They were having basketball contests. He wanted us to stand in line and participate.
A part of me couldn’t imagine me shooting baskets, when I could be obsessing about the robbery. As it turned out, many of the players were quite a bit older than Ry and J. So we encouraged J to stay with my wife. As the line moved forward, Ry pushed me ahead of him, so I was on the court with some hipper, more athletic, and younger guys. We each had one minute to shoot baskets in a game called “around the world.” Whomever made the most shots was able to advance. Much to my surprise, once it was my turn, I made the first, second, and third shot with time to spare. I struggled with the fourth spot, but I was tied with three other guys who moved on to the next level.
During the next round, I advanced with two other guys. And then there was two, me and this guy with a great shot who was at least 15 years younger than me. This time we both lined up opposite from one another. We had thirty seconds . Whomever made all three shots leading up to a shot from the free throw line won the competition. We both made our first shot. We both missed the second with the clock ticking. And then, swish,I made mine. He made his. With seconds to spare, I held it high and let it fly into the basket. I wonnnnnn!!!
My wife and the boys cheered me on. I got some great hugs and a Team USA t-shirt. It just turned the day around. I had fun. The boys really seemed to enjoy seeing me win. And my wife made me feel like the high school basketball star I never got to be. And it was a good reminder, that our lives can change in an instant…sometimes for bad….but also for good.