Go Big or Go Home

I was driving my son home from his Beauty and the Beast rehearsal when his friend called him for advice. I could tell by the look in Zavier’s eyes that he felt ill-qualified to give the requested advice, so his friend was now on speaker phone, interrupting my classical music jam on NPR. Yes, I’m now old enough to make the rock sign for a well-played movement. Now back to the young man in need now on speaker phone.

Zavier’s friend needed advice on how to approach his crush. I listened as the boys were plotting an elaborate if “this person tells that person, then they will tell that person who might know so and so” and on and on, until after 50 degrees of separation, the young lady would know she is being crushed on hard. Dear God.

“Boys, boys, boys…stop,” I said. “If you want the girl, you have to go big or go home.”

My son gave me the look he gives me before he says “Okay, Boomer,” but he knew better than to say that today (a story for another day).

I continued, “Life is too short to send a message through 50 other people. Go up to the girl, tell her she looks fine, and ask for her digits, with a please at the end, of course.”

Silence greeted me, followed with a nervous giggle from the other side of the phone. I explained that “going big or going home” was about not being afraid of what might happen if you did what you felt in your heart. I wished I had learned this earlier in life. I was so awkward and geeky that I let myself stay on the sidelines behind the bench, behind the bleachers, and at least 20 safe feet away from the playing field.

“Put your big boy pants on and tell this girl you like her.”

Zavier’s friend asked, “What if she doesn’t like me?”

I answered, “Then nothing is any different than it is right now. Go big or go home.”

The boys repeated the phrase after me like love disciples.

I shared the advice I gave the boys with my husband later that night. He laughed and told me it was the wrong advice, with my son quipping that he thought that it didn’t sound right. Zavier then inquired how I fell for his dad.

“He walked up to me and asked if I wanted to watch Pink Floyd’s The Wall. Right then, I knew it was forever. It was your dad’s go big or go home moment, and I went home with him.”

“Wow, that’s all?” laughed Zavier.

That’s all. It was my guy’s moment. What if I had never watched The Wall six times prior, analyzing every minute, longing for a significant other to stay up all night with having deep conversations about the film? Yet, I did. And, we did.

Go big or go home. You have nothing to lose other than the potential that it truly was your moment, your love, or your time to win.

‘Twas the Night Before Super Nationals

It ’twas the night before Super Nationals when all through the house,

The uniforms were getting packed for a chance to compete before Mickey Mouse.

The cheer shoes were now sneaker balled with care, in hopes that the car wouldn’t stink before we arrived there.

The cheerleaders were flipping around on their beds, while visions of hit zeros danced in their heads.

And Cheer Mama in her sparkles, and I in my gym branded cap, gave up long ago our hopes for a nap.

Because cheerleaders by nature are always making a clatter, so telling them to be quiet really does not matter.

Away to the car I flew like a flash, tore open the door, and tried to pack up the cheer stash.

The moon shone brightly on our bazillion cheer sparkles below, making my eyes start to tear, so blinding I thought our dog was a bear.

Then my athletes yelled out the door, so lively and quick, “Dad, don’t forget our spirit stick!”

More rapid than eagles, the cheer luggage came, I whistled and shouted and called off the items by name: “Now uniforms! Now cheer shoes! Now, bows and eyeliner! Come on, lipstick! And medical tape! And, backpacks and lucky stuffed items! To the back and the sides and the front of the car! To the top now in a roof rack! To the top of my lap! Now pack it up! Pack it in! Let’s prepare to dash away all!”

Like the bases before the wild flyer must fly, so they don’t get a deduction, I lifted the glitter and gear and it flew, like a sleigh full of toys from St. Nicholas if he was on my packing crew.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard the prancing and chattering of my wife.

As I took a deep breath and was turning around, she came at me with a bound.

She was dressed all in cheer mom gear, from head to foot, and her clothes were all glue gunned with sparkles black like soot. A bundle of healthy snacks she had flung on her back, and she looked like a peddler just opening her cheer survival pack.

Her eyes–how they twinkled! Her dimples, how merry! Her cheeks were like roses, her nose like a cherry! I realized then that I was married to a cheer fairy.

She then started to frown, like a right angry elf, for I had forgotten those darn snacks, in spite of myself.

A wink of her eye and a twist of her head soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread. She spoke not a word, but went straight to work, and filled the car with those snacks, then turned with a jerk.

With a proud sniffle from her nose, she gave a nod, and into the house and up the stairs she rose.

She shouted out a loud “Hey”, and to our cheerleaders gave a whistle, and away they all flew into bed like the down of a thistle.

But I heard her exclaim, after she stomped out of sight, “Let’s win a paid bid in Indy, and to all a good night!”