last night my team lost. and i cried…i cried a lot.
if i’m honest with myself, a lot of my tears had been building up for days due to other reasons…but the thought of my boys in st. louis with broken hearts proved to be the tipping point & a steady stream of silent tears began to roll. it’s not fair. it’s not fair. — why did my boys have to face so much adversity, fight so hard to make it so far only to get punched in the stomach…again.
(another dose of honesty: i presently have tears in my eyes…again)
yes, it’s not fair. and yes, it hurts…but when you have the joy of loving a team with one of the greatest basketball programs in the history of the game, heart-breaking losses come as part of the deal. just like ridiculously wonderful wins do too.
last night after the game i talked to daddy on the phone & he said something that reminded me of why i love being a tar heel — he said something along the lines of: “miss, when you’ve been a tar heel fan for as long as i have, you’re going to remember a lot of ‘what ifs’ and a lot of ‘so closes,’ but you’re always going to have a lot more ‘remember that ___’ [insert epic shot, dunk, win, championship of choice]”
and this 2011-2012 team is no different. this squad has a lot of ‘remember that _____’ moments to write down in the memory books. to name a few:
*remember when the heels started the season on an air-craft carrier?
*remember when tyler zeller was THE nation’s academic all-america player of the year?
*remember when kendall set a new single-season record for # of assists?
*remember when the heels forced the dookies into one of their worst ever performances in cameron indoor? remember how it was 44-22 going into the half?
*remember when UNC was the ACC conference champs…yet again?
AND…remember when we made it to the ELITE 8 with 5 of our first 7 players off the bench either not playing due to injuries or playing with injuries?
yep, i’ll remember. i’ll remember that it royally stunk to come so close, but even more so i’ll remember how ridiculously proud i am to call this team “mine.” — i am convinced no other team in the country would have made it as far if they had faced the same circumstances as this group of heels. this team fought & fought & fought some more. they played with heart and they played for each other and they played for every tar heel around the globe.
and that folks, is precisely why i love being a tar heel. it doesn’t get any better.
except it does, because my team also happens to be full of class-act individuals both on the court and off. this morning i found an e-mail in my inbox from my darling friend kelly…she, like me & countless others, loves these boys and felt their loss last night. but unlike most of us, she had the chance to go welcome the boys back to chapel hill…her words made me smile.
forever & always.