Thursday, June 14, 2012

April 2nd, 2012.

For the first time since I was 8 years old, I woke up on the first Monday in April with my beloved Kentucky Wildcats having one more game left. It was a weird feeling, waking up wondering if this was the last time I would start my day knowing UK has 7 National Championships.

I walked into my psych class with no intention of taking notes. I was fidgety and nervous all day. I felt sick to my stomach and was unable to eat lunch that afternoon. Once class was over, I tried to find things to keep me busy; anything that would distract from the game as any thought of it gave me severe butterflies. I attempted to study for a test I had the following day but I was struggling to stay focused. I kept the television away from ESPN or any other news outlet that may have coverage of the game. At this point I began to wonder if this was all worth it.

As we got close to tip-off a group of us went over to a friend's apartment to have a cookout and watch the game. I could hardly eat as the pre-game coverage fell onto my ears for the first time that day.  Anxiety was at an all time high for me. This is suppose be fun, my team playing for a championship, but was the agony I was putting myself through worth it?

As the game finally got started, I felt myself calm down a little. However, I still paced and never sat down. I crouched in front of the TV, I walked into the back room to get away for a second. I made phone calls to friends and relatives back home in between timeouts so I could vent and so they could calm me down. (Or I could calm them down.) I couldn't really enjoy the game I was watching. My heart was beating fast, my palms were sweating profusely. So was this all worth it?

With just under 10 minutes to play Doron Lamb hit his second three in a row putting the Cats up 16. I jumped into the air and started to believe it was actually going to happen. Kansas made a run taking 3 or 4 more years off of my life but as a missed three landed into the hands of Anthony Davis in the final seconds I ran oustide with my friends to celebrate. As soon as I opened the door I gave out a "YEEEESSSSSS!!!!" that I had obviously held in for 14 years. I started to think about my friends and family back at home that I grew up watching these games with. It's the sole reason I care so much. Those people made me the crazy fan that I am. I thought of my sister, who was at UK, and called her and told her to enjoy it but be careful. I called my grandfather, who has kept stats for all the UK games since 1972. I called my dad who brainwashed me the most and who couldn't even watch the end of the Final Four game because he was so nervous. (I wonder where I get it from). I called numerous friends to celebrate with them via phone calls. I stayed up late following all the post game coverage.

I walked into class the next day not ready for a test I should have studied for the night before. I was very unprepared and didn't do well but it was so worth it.

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