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When you marry a man who has spent most of his life playing the game of football – and nearly seven of those years in the National Football League – the presence of pigskin is nonnegotiable.
And if you like football – which I do – then this is definitely a good thing.
But like any situation in life, there are two sides to the coin.
I’ve already written about the bevy of misconceptions.
So here are the the things that are very much a part of my reality as an NFL wife.
In honor of the most popular weekend in American sports, I give you the following list.
You know you’re an NFL wife when…
- Your husband snaps, crackles, and pops upon getting out of bed in the morning, and he’s not even 50.
- When watching a game with your husband, he is able to identify – and announce – a penalty several seconds before the referee does.
- Letters arrive in the mail at random from fans who kindly request that your husband autograph his enclosed football cards, and then send everything back in the self-addressed stamped envelope provided…all so that said fan can sell the cards for profit on eBay.
- Your husband may be 6’6” and weigh over 300 pounds, but you think his size is average.
- Your son’s first football jersey…is his dad’s.
- Your nose becomes neutralized to the scent of Biofreeze.
- Your husband possess two names: The one he was born with – and the nickname his teammates bestowed upon him after he was drafted. (The latter is used so frequently, it may as well be added to his birth certificate.)
- Your favorite gourmet chip dip cannot be found at your local grocery store, but rather is something your husband’s team’s executive chef whipped up…and you stumble upon it one afternoon while taking in a game inside a suite at the stadium.
- You never tire of hearing all the stories from his playing days.
- An entire section of your closet is dedicated to your husband’s team color.
- …and much like a stay-at-home-mom and her black yoga pants, your husband’s jersey is acceptable attire for most anything. That is, if you can fit into one: When I was six months pregnant with Scotty — and a mere four months pregnant with Kennedy, I was too large to fit into one of Scott’s jerseys. (Oh, sure, I can laugh about it now, but I shed a lot of tears about it back then.) So I had to hold a customized Lions baby onesie in front of my swollen belly during my backyard maternity photo shoot.
- Complete strangers will talk $h!% about your husband’s team, and then turn right around and ask for his autograph…or…wait for it…ask if you can hook them up with tickets.
- Your husband’s 3XL-sized professionally-framed jerseys adorn the walls of your home, becoming mainstays of the décor. They’re like Lay’s potato chips: You can’t have just one because there’s the home jersey, away jersey, college away jersey, college home, etc.
- And then there are the action shots. (And trust me, we have plenty throughout our home.) My favorite is the one in our foyer of The Hubs taking on the late great Reggie White of the Green Bay Packers while then-Detroit Lions quarterback Scott Mitchell, who was on the current season of The Biggest Loser, looks on.
- Football will be worked into your wedding day ensemble, some way, somehow – i.e. a garter belt bearing your husband’s team logo, a groom’s cake or thong with your husband’s number on it, etc. Yours truly may or may not have had these items in her possession (wink, wink).