It was a day for winning and losing.
The boys were in the semi-final round of their basketball bracket. Of course, when they won their game on Saturday, we had to cancel our Mardi Gras dinner plans to make it to their big game on Tuesday (because I only get to do games for 8 more years, a fact I constantly think about).
They knew it would be tight. The opposing team was ranked 1. The boys team was ranked 5.
These games are the best ones because they are close and action packed. The boys team led the first half. But they fell behind in the third quarter. The fourth quarter was back and forth with the five best players on each side playing their heart out.
The clock sounded the end of the game and it was tied, 43-43. In playoffs, overtime is mandatory.
The boys team scored, then the other team. At the end of the first overtime, 45-45. Another overtime was necessary.
All the boys were wiped. Playing hard with each side wanting the victory to head to the championship Saturday. The other team scored. Our team missed the basket. The boys ended their season with a one basket loss and the eldest with a badly jammed pointer finger.
There were tears. They play with their whole heart, one of the things I love so much about them. The players hugged. We talked on the way home. What a way to go out! Isn’t it better to fight well to the very end than get blown out?
Regardless, it still hurt.
On the very same day, I had the opposite result professionally.
I’ve been working incredibly hard over the past couple of months and one of the issues I was working was intense and complex. One possible resolution was a long shot. Small odds of winning but it would completely resolve the big challenge.
And then, in a completely unexpected turn of events, we won yesterday. 3-2. Also close result, just different winner (in our home at least).
I was so excited I actually yelled in my office. Then I called my client and yelled with him. And because it’s sort of a hard thing to explain, I didn’t get the same level of thrill and excitement at home when I reported the news nearly jumping up and down. But for me, it was a good day.
So after the boys game, I came home and opened a very nice bottle of wine I’d been saving for a special occasion. It’s not exactly a parade on Main Street, but a big win is still satisfying.
What I’ve learned is there will be days with big wins or big losses. Days with little wins and little losses. Days with both.
But play hard. Do your best. On the days with losses, let yourself be sad, but then get ready for the next game. On the days with wins, celebrate. You never know when the next one will be.