Hey, how are ya?
Like many New England Patriot fans, I will be glued to a TV this Sunday. Yes, I’m a diehard Patriots fan. I live, breath, and eat Patriots, like most people in New England. I can’t wait to watch Tom Brady this weekend make history, just as he made history for me when my Make-A-Wish-Day came true.
My Make-A-Wish was to meet the Patriot’s players and coaches at Gillette Stadium. My special day was almost six years ago, and it still feels like it was yesterday. That is the kind of magic the Make-A-Wish Foundation produces, and why they are, in my book, one of the most phenomenal organizations around.
Flashback to that memorable August day. I’m scheduled to meet the entire New England Patriots team before their practice. I was still able to walk at that time and I stood outside the practice field to greet and be greeted by the players before they ran onto the field. Even though I had been playing sports and following the Patriots obsessively all my life, this was the moment I realized how big these guys were. It was obvious to me that you have to either be a freak of nature or a monster to play in the NFL. The size of these beasts – and that they were all in great shape with tons of athletic ability – was insane.
I didn’t want to be greedy, but I did notice that after all the high fives and pats on the back were finished, I still hadn’t met two Patriots. I turned toward the tunnel and see in the distance a Greek god-like figure – the most beautiful man I’ve ever seen. The glorious Thomas Edward Brady was walking towards me. A choir of angels surrounded him as he walked. He greeted me graciously with a big bear hug and handed me a bag. In the bag was a customized Patriots jersey and other amazing gifts, including a nice letter from Robert Kraft.
When I saw TB12 in the flesh, I truly forgot the English language. Like an idiot, I just stared at him. Eventually, we took pictures together despite me being dumbfounded. As I was standing with Tom, I felt someone come up next to me and tap my shoulder. Oh, it was just Coach Belichick. No big deal.
What is happening? was all I could think. My head was exploding. “Ooh, hey, coach Belichick, how are you?” was my best response, as if we had just had a few beers recently and we were old buddies catching up.
Here’s the best part. As I’m talking my two new best friends, I felt as if I was going down. I was still able to walk. However, it was hard for me to stand for a long period of time – but only my family knew that. My family, who was watching this encounter happen between us three amigos, were also star-struck. So when I started to wobble and lose balance, my family didn’t react very quickly. I thought I was going down face first, but good ole TB12 literally held me up and made sure I didn’t fall. I hope that you understand now that I truly love the man.
After a few more paparazzi pictures, they went to practice. My family and I spent the rest of the day touring Gillette Stadium and watching the team scrimmage. I will never forget that special day; it truly goes down in history as one of the best days of my life. Add it to the list of reasons why I will be glued to a TV this Sunday rooting for them.
Maybe after reading this story you will love the Patriots more – or hate them less. Either way, GO PATS!