Hockey Dreams

Every winter when the lake I grew up on would freeze over, I would spend hours outside ice skating. This also included hours of watching the neighborhood boys play hockey. These boys were some of my closest friends and me watching them play on the ice in the backyard also turned into me watching them play on their hockey teams at the local rink. I loved watching them play. I loved the fast pace of the game and was never bored watching them. I think back and just remember loving the game.

It was not long after we moved to WI that I remember my cousin calling to say he had two available tickets to that nights Blackhawk's game. I remember wanting to go so bad but thinking there was no way my Dad would drive from Kenosha all the way back to Chicago after working all day. When he asked me if I wanted to go I remember being ecstatic. I can't recall exactly how old I was but I am guessing maybe 10 or 11. I can remember everything about that night from the drive into the city with all the buildings lit up, the old Chicago Stadium full of crazy fans to the sound of that old organ as the National Anthem was played and the fans were so loud I could feel the noise shake through my little body as I put my hands over my ears. I remember Belfour playing goal and the game being incredible. The Hawks won and although I was so excited, I still remember feeling so sad for the other team (specifically the goalie) because they looked so disappointed. It was the first professional sporting event I went to. It is to this day one of the greatest childhood memories I have, especially just one with my Dad and I. I loved that everything about the game that night.

*****

Joey loves hockey. He plays his heart out and can't wait for his games and practices each week. He watched the Hawks games with Jason and I and knows all the players. He watches the movie "Miracle on Ice" about the 1980 US Hockey Team at least once a week. His passion is hockey.

When my friend asked me to sign up for the Hawk's promotion to "Make Your Kid A Captain," I didn't think much of it. Fine, I would enter but never in a million years thought I would actually win.

But then, I did. We got the call on Tuesday that we had won and we were going to that Sunday's game. The prize included two tickets in the 9th row, a Hawks jersey, the child to sit on the bench during the teams warm-up, their name on the jumbo-tron they get to walk through the locker room while the team is getting ready. Needless to say, it was amazing. When Joey learned we won he cried, he was so excited, he actually cried. He counted down the week and could not wait to go to the game.

The Blackhawks did not disappoint. The entire experience was a dream come true for my little man.




The fact that he got to sit on the bench while the team warmed up right in front of him was unreal. I was in awe standing at the glass while they skated right by me!




Yes, that is my boyfriend Patrick Sharp! (Watch the video for footage of him up close and stretching!)

The guys were so nice to Joey and Seabrook skated up and gave him a puck they were practicing with and as each guy left the ice they gave Joey bones, patted his helmet and he felt like he was a part of their team. He then got to move to his awesome seats to watch the Hawks win. The night could not have been more special for him.



I loved having the chance to stand with Jack as the National Anthem was sung and the fans went crazy. The sound rattled through me again and I felt like I was that little girl again. I am so happy I got to experience the night with my boys and I hope when they are as old as I am they remember this night with as much fondness as I do the game I went to so many years ago with my Dad.

I recorded him on the bench and his interactions with the team that he will probably re-watch every day for a long time. If you want to watch, I apologize for the less than stellar videographer skills and the length.



Both the boys had a great night, as did Jason and I. When I tucked Joey in that night he told me it was the greatest day he had ever had and he would never, ever forget it. He said it was a hockey dream come true! There is nothing better to hear as a mom.

I have to say an extra huge thank you to my friend Michelle who not only dragged me to the Jewel (to buy the toilet paper and kleenex required to enter the contest) but for telling me about it and insisting I enter. Then, she shared two of her amazing  Hawks tickets with us so that all four of us could go to the game. She even came to the game, brought her son so Jack had a buddy and celebrated our win with us! (I am happy to say her kid also won the promotion!) So, thanks Michelle for everything!

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