W's First Sporting Event

The day got off to a slow start, but then finished big. I was completely unmotivated to do anything this morning, and for a long time couldn't figure out why. Then I remembered-- I hadn't gotten much sleep last night. I went to bed late and had forgotten to assemble my sleep machine, and was too tired to be bothered to do that. Some nights I can get a passable amount of sleep without the machine, but not last night. I drifted in and out of sleep, never really falling into a deep sleep, and finally got up at 5am and assembled the machine, then slept until 8:30am or so. T had been looking after W in the morning, and by 10:30am I had never really gone and got him so T asked if I was just going to let him watch W on his own all day or what. I said I was going to let him watch W until he brought him to me (which he promptly did). If T gets up with W in the morning (it's random, sometimes I get up, sometimes he gets up), I usually either get the boy myself before 9am or if I'm getting a shower I'll ask T to go ahead and get W dressed and I take him after that. But today I was just not motivated to do anything but lie around all morning. When T dropped off W around 11am, right when he was getting fussy, I instinctively put him in bed with me. W was obviously ready for his nap, and I was surprised that I was also ready to drift off instantaneously. It was only then that I realized how little sleep I got last night, despite being in bed for a long-enough time.

W and I slept for 2.5 hours, and I felt immeasurably better after that.

First we went to the DMV, and I got him some ID. Nothing really prompted me to do this, but the idea popped into my head, and I looked online and the wait at the DMV wasn't too bad, so I decided to do it. The lady there had to take his photo five or six times until they got something they could use. Although he smiled plenty of times, he didn't hold still very well so those times I guess it was blurry; the woman showed me the photo they were going to use, and I just glanced at it but it seemed that W had a kind of spacey look on his face, not particularly cute, but I said it would do. W was losing patience with the whole process and I doubted we'd do much better if that's all we got in the first half dozen attempts.

Then it was time to go to a basketball game! There is a college women's basketball tournament going on now, and the first game started at 4:30pm. I was on my way to the box office to buy a ticket for myself (W gets in free until he's two), but some guy stopped me on the sidewalk and offered me a free ticket because his wife couldn't attend. I appreciated that, especially since it was for reserved seating and I was only going to spring for general admission since I wasn't sure if I'd be there very long.

We went down to the area where our ticket was, relatively near the court. W watched for several minutes, but then something began to upset him. I couldn't figure out what was wrong-- the arena was practically empty because it was not UVA that was playing and the students are not in town, so it was mostly elderly fans, and a few families. So we had plenty of room around us, he could clearly see the action on the court, and it wasn't very loud (compared to a well-attended game). Nevertheless, his lip started to quiver and he looked like he would cry soon and kept pointing up to the mezzanine, so I took him up there to try to figure out what was wrong.

I never did figure out what he kept pointing at up there, it could be just that he wanted to go there in general, since he cheered up once we were out of that particular section of seats. I got him a soft pretzel, and walked around looking for someplace he'd feel more comfortable. We found two seats at the end of a section that were level with the box seating. They were like a little mini-box, with only two seats, but they did have a little glass partition between the seats and the court. Since there were hardly any fans in attendance, none of the ushers cared where exactly we sat, and one thanked us for coming at all. I didn't count, but I think there could have been less than 100 fans in the entire arena. So we watched the rest of the first half from our mini-box, and W relaxed and began to enjoy himself a bit.

At halftime there was no show (no cheerleaders, no half-court shootout, no band, no nothing), and W was getting restless so we took a walk around the mezzanine level of the arena. I'm calling it the mezzanine-- I'm not sure if that's the official terminology, but it was between the upper and lower decks, so that's what I'm going with.

We were in front of the VIP lounge (or something like that, it appeared to be closed for this game) when the second half started, so we just took some chairs up there. They were just folding chairs at the edge of the mezzanine so I guess it was the handicapped area, but we were the only ones there, and it was convenient since W could walk around a bit but still be in this little enclosed area where I could watch him. He watched the game a little more intently than during the first half. I quizzed him to see if he remembered anything I told him when we were sitting in the mini-box. He did-- he could point out the court, and point to the basketball. And when the ladies were dribbling the ball, he'd bounce his hand up and down like he was dribbling, too. And we had enough room in the handicapped section so when the music came on during time-outs, he could dance. He liked that a lot.

I took a photo, but can't seem to get it off my phone. I still haven't figured out how this new phone works, I might have to "authorize" my account to be able to send photos since I keep getting an error message.

We only stayed about halfway through the second half, since by that time it was 6pm and W was losing focus. We'd been there at the game since 4:30pm, so it was a good long outing, and we'd been out of the house since 2:30pm.

I'd take him to another game if there is one at a reasonable time later in the season, but it's not looking likely. There are a handful of day games, but they are either at noon or 1pm, and that conflicts directly with our nap time. Most games are at 6 or 7pm, but that's out of the question since that's bedtime. I think we'll have better luck with outdoor sports later this spring-- there are afternoon games and pretty much anything 2:30pm or later should work for us. But then the weather would have to be pretty good to take a baby; I remember last year it was either too hot or too cold on most days I thought about it.

Overall, I'd judge W's first live sporting event attendance a success. When we got home, he immediately started pretending to dribble a basketball for his father, so I know he was excited about what he had seen, even if he can't speak to express it.