This weekend sees the start of the AFL (Australian Football League) finals.
And my team - the Collingwood Magpies - are right there in among it. To say our household is nervous, and excited, is an understatement.
We cannot commit to any events in the next month in case it clashes with anything finals related. Seriously. Birthday parties. Sleepovers. Trips. Holidays. On hold.
One of the reasons why this club is important to us is history. My husband's family have long, deep connection to the club, with his great grandfather playing and working for them as accountant and piano player. My son has been a member since 2 years before he was born (that's another story ;).)
Another reason we love them so was showcased beautifully in a wonderful documentary played on the ABC this week - Collingwood: From the Inside Out - all about my teams's 2017/2018 seasons. During that time they went from being an hour away from firing their coach at the end of 2017 after six years of depleting success, and deteriorating club culture, to a turnaround rarely seen in such a big business, with the club coming withing two minutes of winning last year's Grand Final.
It was a dream year. A fairy tale. Spring from a decision. To do better. To be better. Not just as administrators, but as men.
The doco highlights what we, as fans, as believers, saw happen week by week; a football club becoming a bastion for kindness, for openness, for tears, for hugs, for opening up about struggles, for love. Yes, love. Love is a word the coach, the players, throw around constantly. These men. These warriors. These humans under an intense spotlight. Above and beyond any wins, losses stats - they love one another.
Win or lose, we are Collingwood Magpies, and so very proud of it.
Do you have a sports team you LOVE? A sports star who you think is a true role model?
Watch the documentary here: https://iview.abc.net.au/show/collingwood-from-the-inside-out
Photos courtesy ABC: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-09-02/afl-documentary-collingwood-from-the-inside-out-mental-health/11452884