The night before my first game for the Spartans I had this dream (I know, blogs about people’s dreams are just the worst… )
I was standing on the sidelines, which is where I belong, except I was being called on. I wasn’t kitted up, I wasn’t even sure girls were allowed to play. I don’t cross that painted line, ever.
The coaches were shouting at me, Emma, GO, Go Now, before you lose us the game.
“I don’t know the rules.”
“Yes you do.”
“I don’t know what I’m doing.”
“Yeah you do.”
Then I was standing in the middle of the pitch with the ball in my hands. I couldn’t remember how to hold it – your thumb goes somewhere specific but I couldn’t remember where and anyway, I’m left-handed, so I must be doing it wrong because I’ve been holding stuff wrong my ENTIRE life because I’m left-handed.
The pitch was empty except for me, though, and it was dark now, no floodlights on. If I threw it, or kicked it, it wouldn’t matter and no one would see anyway. I shut my eyes and threw it.
When I opened them, I said, “Did we win?”
And woke up.
My game face is the only one with lipstick on it, but that doesn’t mean I don’t get nervous. My games for the Spartans aren’t as a player; I stand at the side with an iPhone connected to Facebook and Twitter (HOPEFULLY), a notepad (usually rain-soaked) and maybe a beer if I could get one from somewhere.
I still run up and down though; still shout at them, laugh at them (er, with them I mean), completely lose my rag when we don’t win and drive home either relentlessly singing or with the steaming hump.
It’s here – at last.