How do you possibly describe the power of hockey?
Is it the moments as a hockey mom when you see your son score his first goal knowing he has been shooting pucks at your garage door for hours? The look on his face when the team surrounds him to celebrate and you realize he's created a bond to last a lifetime. You smile to yourself knowing that all the moments that you let him stay outside for that extra hour, under the flood light, has finally paid off. A moment that only you and your young player fully understands. As he cheers and smiles the purest smile because he's accomplished something with the help of his teammates that nobody can ever take away. That moment that you realize that letting him stay up a little later, in the dark, gave him so much more than the extra hour of sleep ever could.
Is it the moments when dad gets up extra early to take his teenage daughter to practice? This young lady who is now unrecognizable to him when she's anywhere but on the ice. The moments in the car when she's all yours, no other chatter from her friends, no boyfriend on her phone, just you and her; just you and her talking about the one love that puberty, boyfriends or years can never take away. It's the simple experience, the simple love of the sport that you have in common no matter how much she's growing up. Even though she no longer looks to you for advice or no longer needs you to tuck her in at night. You drive her, safe in the knowledge that yours will be the face she looks to when she scores that goal; yours will be the eyes she needs when she coughs up the puck, and you will be the one she hugs when her team makes it to the playoffs. Yes the power of hockey, the years it gives a father and daughter when everything else about their relationship feels foreign....if that's not power I don't know what is.
Perhaps it's the spectator who comes to the games faithfully every week, horn in one hand, cowbell in the other to cheer on the team they love so much. They come to watch because they know on that night their biggest worry is if their team wins or loses. For those 60 minutes there is no thought of their bad day at work, or the job they've lost, the spouse they're fighting or worse, the illness they are fighting. For this night it's all about the escape of hockey, that wonderful sport that carries any passionate spectator to a place that leaves no room for anything else but the outcome of the game.
Maybe it's the glow of the tv across our beloved country on Saturday nights. The moments spent in the warmth of your home curled up with a bag of chips and blanket watching Hockey Night in Canada. Is it the volunteer that wakes up at ungodly hours, when the snow is flying, to get to the early morning practices to teach our young superstars how to skate? The Zamboni driver who always takes the time to wave at the little ones who are as excited to see the ice get cleaned as they are to see the game. Is it the coach that has worked all day and raced to get to the rink so his team can see how important it is to be on time?
Or....is it the country that takes such pride in this sport that we call it our own, our number one sport and our nation's game? A country that celebrates the coldest days of the year because we know that it means our ponds will freeze and give us hours of endless shinny with our friends and family. Is it the country that looks forward to Christmas because with Christmas comes Boxing Day and with Boxing Day comes the World Juniors? I honestly can't decide what it is about the sport that makes it so powerful. I guess when a game can bring a country together, a family together and quite simply bring people together the way that hockey does, do we ever really need to question its power? So I guess it's as simple as this, "Don't Ever Underestimate the Power of Hockey!"
- Written by Allyson Tufts
About the author:
Allyson Tufts is a new author that has had many meaningful careers to date in non-profit, social work, and human resources. Her proudest accomplishment is that of being a wife and mother. She spent many years watching her son and daughter enjoy their extra curricular activities. Nothing could prepare her for the stress of standing behind her son's net for his debut as a goalie. As her experiences as a Hockey Mom started to pile up, she realized that not only were they funny, most importantly, they could be helpful to other parents going through their own experiences watching their kids play. She decided to take the leap and put her stories into her first book and so was born, “Lessons from Behind the Glass”.
Since the launch of the book in 2015, she’s sold thousands of copies in both Canada and the United States. She’s had the opportunity to speak to the senior staff and President of Hockey Canada. Most recently she has partnered with BC Hockey and Hockey Eastern Ontario to create a video series for parents based on the lessons from her book.
This article is the property of Allyson Tufts and is not to be used without her permission. To learn more about Allyson Tufts or to purchase the book, please visit www.lessonsfrombehindtheglass.com.