It’s not you, it’s your sports team
It’s not you, it’s your sports team
In honor of the NWSL launch, I wanted to revisit the 2001 WUSA Inaugural Game played in Washington, DC on this throwback Thursday.
It was Mia v Brandi and DC was decked out in posters of their faces. At the game, there were parachuters. And Billy Jean King. And Michelle Akers. And the 1999 Women’s World Cup Team. And every legendary women’s soccer player you can imagine from Sun Wen to Kelly Smith was in attendance to see the league launch.
I know many of you think of Brandi as that annoying commentator who criticizes USWNT. But I think of her as the person who eloquently and passionately spoke to me about the importance of the first professional women’s soccer game in the United States.
(If you want to read more about my perspective on women’s professional soccer from back then, go read this. But I can tell you, it hasn’t changed, nor has the financial reality of all of this.)
NWSL may not launch with the same pomp and circumstance that the WUSA did (nor should it). But do not for a second undervalue the significance of NWSL getting off the ground this weekend. This weekend, the legacy continues.
Our favorite players have dedicated themselves to it. Now it’s our turn to do our part. We may not get another shot at this. As they say, third time’s the charm. Overlook whatever little hiccups you may encounter in these early days and focus on what is important: having a professional women’s league.
Go to games, Watch online. But tickets. Buy merchandise. Volunteer. Write about on social media. Tell your friends. Do what you can. Get involved.
Believe me, it will take all of us working together to make it last.
This is how you lose her.
You lose her when you forget to remember the little things that mean the world to her: the sincerity in a stranger’s voice during a trip to the grocery, the delight of finding something lost or forgotten like a sticker from when she was five, the selflessness of a child giving a part of his meal to another, the scent of new books in the store, the surprise short but honest notes she tucks in her journal and others you could only see if you look closely.
You must remember when she forgets.
You lose her when you don’t notice that she notices everything about you: your use of the proper punctuation that tells her continuation rather than finality, your silence when you’re about to ask a question but you think anything you’re about to say to her would be silly, your mindless humming when it is too quiet, your handwriting when you sign your name in blank sheets of paper, your muted laughter when you are trying to be polite, and more and more of what you are, which you don’t even know about yourself, because she pays attention.
She remembers when you forget.
You lose her for every second you make her feel less and less of the beauty that she is. When you make her feel that she is replaceable. She wants to feel cherished. When you make her feel that you are fleeting. She wants you to stay. When you make her feel inadequate. She wants to know that she is enough and she does not need to change for you, nor for anyone else because she is she and she is beautiful, kind and good.
You must learn her.
You must know the reason why she is silent. You must trace her weakest spots. You must write to her. You must remind her that you are there. You must know how long it takes for her to give up. You must be there to hold her when she is about to.
You must love her because many have tried and failed. And she wants to know that she is worthy to be loved, that she is worthy to be kept.
And, this is how you keep her.
This made me cry. If only…