When my eyes woefully opened on January 8, I had no idea there was a shift in my brain.
I forced myself from the warm comfort of my cozy bed and stumbled to the kitchen to make a much needed cup of coffee. I was up before my alarm so it might be a two cup day.
As the coffee was brewing, I turn on espn to see if they’re talking NFL playoffs. Alas, my screen is filled with orange and crimson.
As I’m halfway listening to Jalen Rose defending Coach Saban, I feel a scattering in the back of my brain. I dismiss it and continue on with the typical Tuesday morning routine before work.
Half an hour passes and my fingers feel twitchy. My heart is beating a bit harder. I grumble to myself about how anxiety is a pest and continue to ignore it.
But as I’m grabbing my keys to head to work, it hits me. I want to write. After three years of words failing me because I’ve been crushed by uncharacteristic losses, and my expectations were catapulted into a dark lair where I think Roger Goodell feasts on fans sorrows, I wanted to write.
My love of the Chiefs never wavered, but being able to write to the multitude of fans drifting on that sea of disappointment had fallen overboard and didn’t resurface.
Maybe as this season progressed better than I anticipated, I could feel the desire to pour my heart onto the page of the internet. But the words stayed just out of reach for me to articulate the way this team made me feel.
But here I am. The Tuesday before another playoff game at Arrowhead and I can’t stop my brain from finding all the words. Maybe it’s because I know the majority of Chiefs Kingdom is feeling exactly what I am. Start with excitement, add joy, sprinkle in anxious, with a dash of dread, and a pinch of salty curse that has plagued us for as long as I’ve been on this earth. That’s a recipe for a Chiefs playoff game. It makes me want to puke.
It feels poetic that the Chiefs will face the Colts. I have an irrational hatred of the Colts because of all the postseasons they’ve found victory through our guys. The best way to end a curse it to face the foe that seems to benefit from it time and time again. As my wise father so eloquently put it, “we can finally get the monkey off our back.”
It does seem crazy to me that I’m sitting here looking at my team seeded as number one in the AFC and I’m worried about playing the team seeded sixth. However, anyone with a platform to talk football has done nothing but build up how the Colts will tromp through Arrowhead and beyond. Maybe it’s the playoff curse, maybe it’s the nationwide love of Andrew Luck, maybe it’s because it is so easy for people to disrespect Kansas City. Not long ago this same city was called a fluke in baseball in 2014. And we all remember how 2015 played out. *adjusts crown*
For me, the anticipation, confidence, and excitement that wrapped itself around the 2015 Royals is exactly how I feel when I look at the 2018-19 Chiefs. There’s a buzz in the air. Do you feel it? It’s pulsing from the grounds at Arrowhead. A rumble I can feel up my spine. It tickles my mind to conjure images of my team playing in Atlanta.
So with this first rambling post, I’ll end with this. We are right to have caution. Heartbreak teaches us to tread lightly. But wear your red with pride. Talk, shout, whisper to anyone that will listen about this team. This ride has been amazing, fun, and downright unexpected. I don’t think I’m wrong when I say, our guys aren’t done yet.
For those of you packing into Arrowhead Saturday, I want to hear you from my front yard. For those of you, like me, staying home for this game, you have to make noise too. Let it raise from the heart of the plains and spread like wildfire to the coasts.
We’re here. We’re ready. Let’s roll.