I've always told people that if they spent more time with my parents, they would understand me better. I got my real start on Dawg Sports because something hit me a certain way and I wanted to write about it; as often as I say that I am like my dad, there is much of my mom in me, too. This morning, I woke up to find Mom talking about this post that she'd written that she wanted me to put up on here. Considering that my mom is usually as much of a morning person as I am, to say I was surprised would be an understatement (and yes, she wrote this well before she read any of the other similar things that went up today/yesterday/whatever). I offered to set her up with her own account so she could post this, but she said that she figured that would be too dangerous and too much of a temptation. I guess she figures that, as a pastor's wife, she has to watch what she says; I, on the other hand, know that, as a preacher's kid, I'm expected to say bad things, right?
My mom also wanted me to post this because this summer, she survived cancer and cancer surgery. So DavetheDawg, when you talk about the daily pressure of the here and now, we know what you're talking about. We understand the exhaustion, the constant pressure that is always on your mind even when you're not directly thinking about it, and the doubt that this will ever end-and if it does end, that it will end well. We were blessed; Mom was diagnosed with cancer, operated on, and declared cancer-free in a matter of 5 weeks. That just doesn't happen normally, so now we know one of the reasons that God led us 500 miles away from where we had lived for nearly 2 decades.
When Mom woke up from her surgery, one of the thoughts that went through her mind was that she was thankful she was going to get to watch her Dawgs play this year. While the healthiness of watching Bulldog football is debatable, the option of turning away during tough times is no more of a viable response from us now than it would've been this summer. You don't fight cancer that way; you don't fight injuries that way; you don't fight the SEC that way. So here is Mom's post, separated by a gif that shows a cancer cell roasting away in the same fire I used for the Goat Roast gif just because I can.
For some reason, this only works if you click on it in preview; oh, well.
If I had a handle, it would be Dawgma because I am a Dawg mother and a pastor's wife. I follow Dawg Sports because of its good, informative articles, because my son lives and works in Athens, and because Cherokee's Grip is my daughter. I have read her poetry and have watched her pour her emotions into her work concerning her Dawgs during the football season.
Our Dawgs are standing in one of the biggest defining moments of this program. Do they fall or do they show the nation why they are the Junkyard Dawgs who are part of the tradition of hard-fighting, tenacious, hobnail-boot-stomping, hunkerin' down players that have made our program outstanding?
Why do young men come to Georgia? To become what? Possible professional players? Yes. Players who fulfill lifelong dreams of playing for the Dawgs? Yes. Players who prove to themselves that they are good enough to play for UGA? Yes. Players choose to attend the University of Georgia for these and many more personal reasons.
Why do the coaches coach? Why are they called-or have chosen-this profession? To relive bygone glory? Perhaps. To teach, to make better football players out of already-very-good players? Perhaps. Most coaches desire to teach more than football; they want to instill good character and life lessons in these young men.
What I witnessed on the Georgia sideline in Neyland Stadium in the midst of disbelief, shock, and "Oh, crap!" moments was a good team become an "I've got your back" team. Instead of being caught up in the split-second panic of, "What do we do now?" young men sought out and reassured injured players before becoming the "next men up" that Aaron Murray exhorted them to be. Led by Murray and seasoned coaches, our offense Bull-Dawged its way down the field and scored. Even the broadcasters recalled Larry Munson's legendary call of a similar past Tennessee game play!
So...Where are we now? And yes, I include myself in "We." I call upon every true Georgia fan to stand for this team because we are the 12th man! Pray for each player, coach, and staff member! As a mom, I say to Coach Mark Richt: Pray, because I'm praying with you. Not just for victory, but for a healing calm and clarity. You have an opportunity to show what you believe! I do believe! As corny and overused as this statement is, I do believe we can be on the brink of showing the nation that we are the Georgia Bulldogs, the Dawgs, the Junkyard Dawgs.