Saturday, January 22, 2011

Basketball Redux

Naomi back in the day

Naomi's senior basketball season coincided perfectly with my 16 week stint in
 chemoland. I never missed a home game but I didn't go to some of the away
 games that were more than an hour away if the roads were bad. Naomi now 
weighs 25 lbs less than she did when she was practicing for 2.5 hours a day.
.and she just had a baby. She is now  taking a gym class to help tone her up.

Last night her old team played their cross town rivals as did the boys' team. 
Don'tae's cousin plays center for the rivals so she sat with him (and Maya) in
 'enemy' territory. The cousin is 6'7" and dunks regularly. However, the River
 Rat boys were the State's runner ups last year (and they have since beaten the
 state champion) so they were hard to beat. The gym was packed for the boy's 
game which was first. I sat with a former soccer dad whose son played on
 Josh's travel team. It was fun catching up.

Half of the fans disappeared for the girls' game. Shame on them. Only one
 current player played on Naomi's team though she knew at least half of the 
other players. I caught up with some of the parents who were surprised to see
 Maya (didn't you tell her about birth control?). . The rival team however had
 many of the same players that Naomi played against. The Lady Rats prevailed
 but they aren't the strong team that Naomi played on. No defense for
 instance: Naomi's specialty. The rivals' coach was battling a rare form of 
uterine cancer when I saw her last year that had spread. Usually it is the lining
 that tumors develop in but in her case, it was in the muscular wall. She seems
 to have her own hair now and by all reports is doing fine. Two years ago, the 
two teams met and were raising money for LiveStrong, I spoke to her and 
she was very encouraging. My friends came to see the game in which 
Naomi played very well. It was a bright spot during the bleak time of
 chemoland also coinciding with my least favorite season.

You can lead a horse to water but you can't make her drink. Lectures, 
doctors' visits....all in vain. But whining about it also is counterproductive. Do
 I wish Maya didn't exist? Of course not but maybe she could have popped up
 when Naomi was much, much older.

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