The Last Football Game


Weston, leaving the field of his final football game, the last time he will ever play organized football, the last time he will ever wear a Roane County Raiders uniform.

Ninth-ranked Roane County Raiders lost to #1-ranked Ravenswood last night in Ravenswood.

The first quarter was impossible to watch. Far too painful. The Raiders forgot that the game had started and let Ravenswood make four touchdowns. In the first quarter. They recovered after they woke up and the rest of the game was competitive–except for the fact that it was already over in the first quarter.

They were kicking themselves afterward for not playing up to their ability in the first quarter, but they were good sports. They had a school record-breaking winning season and, for the first time ever, took their school to the second round of the state playoffs. And, small schools from small towns who aren’t used to winning know better than anybody how to lose with their heads up. They have a lot of practice at that, so they’re pretty cheerful.

I traveled to the game with Morgan and one of Weston’s friends. Weston rode back with us to the school to meet the team bus. We stopped at a Taco Bell. Everyone was happy. He met up with his girlfriend at the school at the band bus and then he was even happier, and everyone went off to spend the night together in town as per their usual Friday night routine. (Weston, Morgan, and their whole nerdy geeky group spend every Saturday playing some kind of nerdy geeky game that I don’t understand.)

Thanksgiving week just got a mite bit easier as there is no football practice. (Just basketball practice for Morgan.) Weston will (finally) start driving again starting Monday. He will be behind the wheel of my old Jeep. Keep my Jeep, me, and Weston in your thoughts.

A lot of senior blockers will be leaving the Raiders this year. Next year’s team may not be as successful. The runningbacks can’t run if they don’t have blockers. I don’t know, I won’t be in the stands next year. But this junior #5 here, he’s a star.

Somebody give that kid some blockers.

I think I know way too much about football now. I suspect I shall forget it all shortly.

Except for this one thing.

It was worth every cold, hard, late-night minute of the last five years that I was there–

–for #57.

P.S. I told him after the game that he could quit the team now.


  1. Nic, SD says:

    (Weston, Morgan, and their whole nerdy geeky group spend every Saturday playing some kind of nerdy geeky game that I don’t understand.)

    L O L

  2. Nic, SD says:

    Shoulda added… They don’t LARP, do they? ‘Cuz that would be awesome.

  3. CindyP says:

    Yay Raiders for a great season!!! And to Weston for seeing it all the way through!

    Everyone, including the old Jeep, is in my prayers!

  4. Sheila Z says:

    Congratulations Weston on a well played season!

    It’s all that Stringtown Farm cooking that made a big football player. The parents of the up and coming kids just need you to give them some cooking lessons. Winter is coming, I’ll be praying for Weston, Morgan and the jeep. Mostly I’ll be praying that it doesn’t give you too many gray hairs this winter. It does mean less driving for you though and more time to make hard cheese.

    Good luck to Morgan in the up and coming basketball season!

  5. Tow Lady says:

    Congratulations, Weston, on a well-played season!!! We football moms are a hearty bunch, aren’t we, Suzanne? At one point in our playoff game last night, my sis in law and I considered running on the field, kicking a couple of their players in the shins, striking a pose, then running back off. I use the word “running” very loosely here…”waddle” would probably have been more like it, lol!!! Think of me when you’re nice and warm by the fire next week and we’re still out there freezing!!! :wave:

  6. Rebecca says:

    As the mother of a high school football player, now in college, I treasure these posts. Your lyrical writing absolutely captured the experience, which, as hard as it is to go through, ends all too soon. I treasure the pictures of my football warrior in uniform, and wonder where does the time go?

  7. greensborodailyphoto says:

    Right down to the very last sentence, this piece of writing is so clever! SM at her best! There are lots of great photo blogs but there aren’t nearly as many where the owners can WRITE. I enjoy your writing as much as your photos!

  8. Granny Mountain says:

    Hard to read, closing of a chapter of his life and yours. We did it with girls…I’d think “This is the last time I’ll do this with the girls.” They are 30 and 39 now, married and “living their lives” as Mom says. Like I said, it was hard to read…

  9. texwisgirl says:

    Loved that you told Weston he could quit now. Way to go Mom and Son! Keep going Mom and Daughter! 🙂

  10. AmyW says:

    Congratulations to Weston’s team. I know what you mean about small teams. We’ve lost a few heartbreakers this season. My middle son just finished his junior year. He loves football so much and I think he will be a little lost after next year. Next year his younger brother will be a freshman so I’ll have two players on the field. I still don’t understand everything about football. I have to turn to my husband during the games and ask, “why or what was that?”

    At first, I resented football season. I resented the time it took away from family, the wasted time sitting in the car waiting for practice to be over, and the cold, wet nights sitting in the stands. Then last year, Zach actually started on defense as a sophomore and things changed. Oh the thrill of watching that boy chase down a running back. He’s not a big boy but he has a lethal tackle. There is an intensity about him on the field that is so much fun to watch. He’s in his element when he puts on the helmet and pads. I’m an official football mom know. After their last game, I posted on facebook that I couldn’t wait for the next season 🙂

  11. AmyW says:

    “an official football mom now…” for goodness sakes, the grammar police are knocking at my door. 😛

  12. Barbee' says:

    So much going on, busy, busy! Good post, Suzanne, gives us a lot to think about. And, besides thinking, you have a lot of people praying for you and yours. Here we are, praying and voting — you make even our lives more interesting. Tiz’ Thanksgiving season, and we are thankful for you. :happyflower:

  13. mary beth says:

    awesome post! Can’t believe he’s old enough to be done! It seems like only yesterday he was starting high school. Thanks for sharing these moments with us, Suzanne.

  14. Ramona says:

    Sorry they didn’t win the last game, but sounds like they did have a very good season.

  15. beth Brown says:

    Awwww……I love happy endings 8) It’s tough while you’re in the midst but it is so bittersweet when it ends. I was at my daughter’s soccer banquet the other night and was in tears listening to the senior’s ‘goodbye’ speeches.

    Hugs –
    Beth Brown One Old Goat (who gets older just reading stuff like this)

  16. Donna in KS says:

    You will do nearly the same (believe it or not) if you ever have a grandson playing! And I think I was more sentimental when that last game was played than with either of sons’. Just the river of life!

  17. Lisa Starcher says:

    I super LOVE this site!…It is all wonderful. Tyler #17 played with Weston this year, he loved it! They had a wonderful season! Keep this site going! Love Love Love it!!

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