My husband is an athlete. He played three sports in High School (equally talented in Football, Baseball, and Track). He works at a landscaping company Monday through Friday for at least 8 hours a day. When he gets home, he explains how he worked out by dead-lifting 75 pounds of grass with one arm. Basically, he is incredibly fit and I admire the heck out of his bangin' bod.
I was the editor-in-chief of my High School yearbook. I played basketball in junior high, and have maintained an active lifestyle. I like to keep a frequent work-out schedule. But I would certainly not claim to be the best, fastest, strongest, etc. It takes me 8 minutes and 40 seconds to run a mile. I also know nothing about football. I would attend games in High School just so I could dress up in our schools colors and then go out afterwards with all my friends. My parents love football, and are even a bit crazy about the BSU Broncos, but I just was never that interested. Football means Superbowl Sunday, good beer, and time spent with some of my favorite people.
One of the qualities I love most about my husband is that he loves me, and fell in love with me, knowing that I knew absolutely nothing about his favorite sport. In fact, I am not expected by his basketball/track coach brother, his amazingly athletic father, or his active mother to know diddly-squat about football.
Because of this, it has sparked my interest. Since I don't feel the pressure to know what is going on simply so I can fit in, it gives me room to ask questions ("What does '4th down' mean?") that seem idiotic to someone who loves the game. But my husband and father-in-law are not only teaching me about the game, but giving me "permission" to ask silly questions. I get to know everything from a perspective of teaching and love. I feel cared for in how they are gently edging me towards caring about the game.
So. I am determined to love the game. Even if I don't end up "loving the game", I get to share the experience of learning from two of the people that mean the very most to me. And it all started with them explaining very basic aspects of the game to me. It was like a foreign language turned into English and to translate I just had to ask. And it was an invitation to learn, not feel judged or stupid because I never cared before.
If you are anything like me, all you have to do is be honest with your feelings, or lack thereof. Give yourself permission to not understand. You can THRIVE (instead of just survive) the entire football season!
P.S. Go BSU Broncos :)