In honor of Autism Awareness Month this April, guest contributor Amber Knowles highlights Autism Spectrum Disorder.
By: Diana Holmes
A drop of sweat trickles down a knit brow to the tip of the nose and slowly drops on the grass between a pair of shoes. Inhale, exhale, inhale, exhale. Huge, deep breaths to regain any sort of breath composure...That's me running after my son in the month of August because I'm out of shape. And you thought I was doing a clever, lyrical depiction of what my husband goes through at training camp, haha.
Training camp is one of the most physically and mentally exhausting parts of football season--for both player and family. So I decided to put a list together of things to do during this next month.
- Work Out! Stay sane and get those endorphins pumping with a nice workout. This one is tough for a lot of the moms out there because of the whole 'no babysitter' thing but even going for a run with the stroller can change your whole mentality. I usually go running when I'm having a bad day and it helps to clear my busy mind. In the famous words of Elle Woods, "Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don't shoot their husbands, they just don't. " So there's that.
- Build Friendships. Admit it or not, we all morph into homebodies during the season. It seems like plans always get made and canceled because we don't get much time with our guys during season, so we try and capitalize on any we can get. Take training camp as an opportunity to build your friendships or make new ones. Dinner, wine tasting, play-dates--whatever!
- Work Towards A Goal. Set a goal for yourself to achieve. Plan to run a race at the end of the month, join a book club, or declutter your house. The options are really quite endless. You'll keep busy while working towards something that will empower your self-confidence.
- Support, Support, Support!I always get an attitude during camp because it's always frustrating. Andre is exhausted and never has much time to talk. If you're in the same state, you maybe see each other once a week--not to mention all the added stress they experience. It takes a toll on the relationship so this one is the hardest for me. Send care packages, inspirational quotes, Bible verses--anything helps.
Our significant others and their teammates will spend the next four weeks improving their skills and pushing themselves to better their craft. Why shouldn't we do the same?
To Our Husbands, Fiancés, and Boyfriends:
Most of us complain about how so many aspects of our lives revolve around you due to your basketball careers. While where we live, what time of year we’re available for certain events, and other logistical decisions may be based on your careers, if we’re honest, so many other parts of our lives revolve around us. You all do so much to make sure that we, as the women in your lives, are happy and comfortable.
NBA training camp is a time of uncertainty. Every team is allowed a 15-man final roster and with up to 20 men on the training camp roster, there is always a possibility of cuts for those who aren’t guaranteed. While it’s true that this uncertainty drives us up the wall, we never want you for a second to feel like our insecurities are a reflection of you because that is the furthest thing from the truth.
We believe in you more than we believe in anyone else and we see how hard you work to not only be the best basketball players you can be, but also the best men you can be. Our fear is never that you’re not doing your best, but only that because of politics or finances or whatever other aspects are at play that everything won’t line up. Many of us have been there and know how it feels not only for us, but for you as well. While NBA training camp might trigger anxious feelings for many of us, we realize that you’re under a tremendous amount of pressure as well. You all perform under pressure so many nights during the year that we sometimes feel like you’re immune to it, but we never want that to stop us from making sure that we’re doing all we can as the women in your lives to ensure that you’re where you need to be mentally and emotionally so that you can play your best.
We want you to know that we have faith in you. We have faith in the men that you’ve become and the basketball players that you’ve worked so hard to be. More importantly, we have faith in God and that what He has for you will always be for you. We have faith that regardless of the outcome of training camp, we’re on the right path and together with God as our Father, there is nothing we can’t conquer. Proverbs 31 Ministries teaches that “it’s often the little steps, those things we don’t always get the ‘why’ of, that eventually lead us to great places.” We know that’s true for you and we feel so blessed that you chose us to come along for the ride.
So, with NBA training camp coming to an end and preseason games beginning, we want you to know that we trust you. We want you to know that we’re here for you. We want you to know that we’re excited for what’s to come. Good luck and our prayers, as always, are with you.
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