Though it may sound strange, the South Carolina Gamecocks have taught him a lot about what makes a marriage work.
I grew up in a household that is devoted to the South Carolina Gamecocks. The majority of my family has attended the University of South Carolina, or one of its satellite campuses in the state. Football and baseball teams are the pride of our sports fanaticism. We have stood behind our teams in the toughest seasons, and we have reveled in victory of the more recent successful seasons the college teams have had. As the ever popular Facebook page says, “We are Gamecock Born and Gamecock Bred. We’ll be screaming ‘Go Cocks’ until we are Gamecock dead”. We have a fan loyalty like no other
I never knew that when I got to this age that fan loyalty would provide me with some great marriage philosophies. I guess you can gain perspective from just about anything and apply it somewhere else in life. I’m not a huge sports fan. Only when it comes to my beloved Gamecocks. Even then, it’s pretty limited to baseball and football. I have gained helpful insights to life from many places. From sitting in the laundromat, to sleeping in the back of a ‘94 Ford Escort. So I guess I should not be surprised that I would learn something from my fanaticism for Gamecocks sports as well.
I will share these insights with you…. now.
This is YOUR team too: Fans of the Gamecocks know how important their role is in the success of the teams. The team players know this as well, and coaches are very adamant about encouraging fans to stick with their teams and to show up and be loud for them. It makes a huge impact on the way they play and their success.
The same can be said for a marriage. It is your team too. It’s only right to show up for your spouse, cheer for your spouse, and be there for your spouse. It’s doesn’t mean be a fairweather fan. It means letting them know you want to be a part of their success, and the success of your marriage. Acknowledging that your support and love for them will be behind them to drive the marriage.
True fans stick through thick and thin: As any Gamecocks fan will tell you, we know a thing or two about losing seasons. We have seen the best of times recently from the football and baseball teams. But we are accustomed to sticking behind our teams through the roughest of seasons. I also know a thing or two about sticking through a marriage through the thick and the thin. From an affair that almost destroyed my marriage, the news that I was not the first, and the news of my cancer diagnosis. My wife and I have held on through the worst of times. Because of this, we have been able to celebrate the best of times with a deep love and affection.
It’s hard sometimes to recognize all that you have when things are going great. It’s when the going gets tough that you realize who your biggest fan is. If you can stick with each other through the tough times, then the smooth patches become that much more important.
Win or lose, it’s all about good sportsmanship: Win or lose, good sportsmanship and dignity is an important asset in a quality player. You’re not always going to win, and you’re not always going to lose. Either way, when you play with dignity, you have played above a W-L statistic, and leave the game with your integrity.
A perfect marriage does not exist. Even a good marriage does not exist without arguments. It will happen. You may not always win them, and you may not always lose. But in a disagreement, it is important to be kind, be understanding an open, and leave your dignity intact. Arguments that spiral out of control are destructive, and nobody wins when nobody can play fair. Take the time to listen, to understand, and to respond in a kind manner, and one that is constructive to the marriage.