Last spring, the Jacksonville Jaguars drafted the number one pick, Trevor Lawrence, to the team. Selecting Trevor was a HUGE win for our city as we have been in a bit of a football slump since… pretty much forever.
Ahead of the draft, Jacksonville embraced Trevor and his wife by sending them a wedding gift. Then, they turned around and donated $20,000 to Jacksonville charities. Their arrival in the city has been a love story between the newlyweds and all of Jacksonville. To say we love the Lawrence's would be an understatement.
What sealed the deal for me was Trevor and his wife have a Bernedoodle. A Bernedoodle is a cross between a Bernese Mountain Dog and a Poodle. First of all, I say anything mixed with a poodle is fabulous and fluffy. Second, anyone who saw the draft saw the dog was even more excited about the pick than Trevor!
But I digress.
As I’m sure that most parents will admit, surviving parenthood takes guts, discipline, ingenuity, and a dollop of insanity. I liked to fancy myself the Queen of Creativity when it came to raising my children. Believe it or not, I was first to teach my son how to play football, and it’s just one of my Mommy Victories. Of course, this might also be why he never pursued a professional career, but that is a story for another time.
I know nothing about football positions, scoring, or any of the other details. I do know there is throwing, catching, and running. I figured I could teach my son the basics and rely on my husband for the finer points.
Being a schemer, I figured I’d use the dogs as leverage. First, I would keep the dogs by me when I threw the ball to my son. Then I would release the hounds while the ball was in mid-flight and let nature take its course.
The beauty of my plan was three-fold. One, Braeden would learn to catch the ball, or he’d lose it to his destructive puppies (two dogs can scatter Nerf Football Guts within seconds of contact if they are in a bitey mood). Two, if he did lose the ball, he’d have to chase the dogs around the yard, which would increase his speed and endurance. And three, the kid and canines would end up exhausted, which nobody loses in that scenario.
How I never won a Genius Parent of the Year award is a mystery to me.
One Saturday, I attended my son’s flag football game. Since my daughter was cheerleading, I decided to bring the dogs and make it a family event.
I paid dearly for my decision in the form of an almost dislocated shoulder from Enthusiastic Doodle Syndrome from all the attention they received. However, when their fan club left, they settled down at my feet. Since I am heartier, I held on to Moo’s (115 lbs.) leash, while my Mom held on to Taffy’s (35 lbs.).
Somewhere around the third quarter, Hadley approached us with a runny nose. Once I gave up a diaper bag; I NEVER had emergency items, like tissues. So I would count on the kindness of strangers… or my Mom. My Mom yanked off her gloves and produced a snort rag (allowing her to carry that junk gave her a purpose in life).
Then, as I turned back to my son’s game, I noticed a peach-colored dog streaking across the football field.
“Hmm,” I said to my mother. “That dog looks kinda like Taffy?”
Confused, I turned back to my Mom and realized that Taffy was missing.
I looked back on the field in time to see my Goldendoodle darting after the football.
I was horrified yet fascinated at the same time. I know Doodles aren’t allowed in flag football, but DAYUM, her form was fine! That dog had NFL written all over her.
Luckily, my husband caught Taffy before she grabbed the ball and scored for the other team. But, unfortunately, he did NOT look pleased with our babysitting skills. Of course, he could have volunteered for Doodle Duty himself if he was so unhappy with our services.
I doubt Trevor Lawrence’s Mom had to put up with this nonsense. She probably distributed orange slices, collected Trevor's medals, and went on without incident.
Maybe I should warn Trevor’s wife, Marissa when they have their wee football player. That Bernedoodle of theirs has all the makings of a scene-stealer already. Before she knows it, Trevor will be chasing that pup down the football field before he scores for the other team.
Am I the only one who has these experiences?