Sunday, March 16, 2008

Champions!

You may have watched it or maybe looked up the score the next day, but Pitt beat Georgetown to win the Big East Tournament!

I got teary-eyed sometimes during the trip to NYC. Those times included walking on the streets of Manhattan...and also while they were playing the national anthem and announcing the starting lineups. I was just so happy to be there again for the tournament. It gave me a feeling of being normal. It's probably hard for most of you to understand, but feeling normal is no longer routine. But I was really happy. I owe a great deal of thanks to one of my best friends, Fish. Without him, I probably would not have gone to NYC for the game.

Back to the game...I was nervous the entire time. I guess I assumed Georgetown was better than they were. It was exciting, to say the least. In the end it all worked out in my favor (is that a sign of things to come???) ;-)

After the game, Fish and I stayed to see the trophy ceremonies and the cutting down of the net (a basketball tradition, for those who don't know, where each player and coach climbs a ladder and cuts off a piece of the net). While I was watching, I noticed another friend in the stands. It was a guy from my DC Pitt alumni club, Kevin. He was down lower than me and was shaking hands with some of the players.

When all the players had left the court, I circled around to Kevin. He was in the midst of happily telling his group of friends how one of the players gave him a piece of the net. He saw me and stopped his story. His transition:

"Hey everyone, I'm going to give this piece of the net to my buddy, Shawn, here." (And he told them why.)

I lost it. I couldn't even talk as I could no longer fight back my tears of joy. All I could do was get out a faint, "thank you" and give Kevin a hug. I even hugged his one friend who I didn't know.

I returned to Fish who was in the gift shop and told him the story of what just happened. He could see that I was crying, so he put his arm around me, too.

So many people are doing such great things for me, I can't even begin to thank people.

I'll leave you with one last thing...I won't turn down a hug whenever you see me. They really help me get through this. :'-)

9 comments:

Kelly said...

Great story (and great win - and that's coming from a Hoya alum).

Our coach just sent info. about the 5K to our softball team, we're hoping to get a group out on Sunday to show our support.

Michelle said...

I am so happy you made the trip and so happy to get your phone calls during the game! That win was for you. See you tomorrow at Gtown.

Janice said...

Hey Cornerback

You are a Champion----too!!!!!

Still wearing the Pitt Cap everyday

GBDad

Sara said...

Hi Shawn,
It was great to see you at GUH today. This is an incredible story and made my day.
If you email me at slm36@gunet.georgetown.edu, I have a bit of information I can email you, in follow up to what we discussed.

Take care,
Sara Moore

tallarico said...

Shawn-

Pitt winning the BE this year was special in so many ways. You getting up there to watch them cut down the nets and then getting a piece of it is so awesome.

Keep what these Pitt kids did as an inspiration. They were beset by injuries, went through adversity and were basically told to pack it and forget about their season. Rather than listening to any of the skeptics, these kids didn't quit, they maintained their focus and kept their eye on the prize. They took down three ranked teams, including one with a Hall of Fame coach, and the other who returned four starters from their final four team from last year.

No doubt, your going to have many tough days ahead - far greater than what these Pitt kids went through. But don't get too down and don't give in. Think of Mike Cook getting to raise that Big East trophy on Saturday night on the same floor where his college career all but ended. Better days like Saturday night at the Garden are ahead for you - don't lose focus of that.

And remember, we're all here for you when need any help or someone to lean on.

Rebecca said...

Go Pitt!!

Shawn, you made me cry. Well, now you have a crying buddy.

BluIrishYs said...

Shawn - you know i'm not one to follow sports (well, maybe the olympics/ice skating and gymnastics ...and maybe even some va bb when ralph sampson was playing...:)...but i've been anxiously wondering if your trip to nyc turned out as a win-win for everyone. I'm so GLAD to know that you were able to celebrate being in the midst of the game with the players, and your friends, and getting a piece of the history to boot!

Hope you were able to get your chemo on Monday...and that you have good results from your visit on 21st (?) at JH...

you can always get hugs from me...

hey - didnt' anyone ever tell you that hugs are better than sex? :)

Duck said...

Shawn,
Your blog is amazing. I'm sorry I haven't followed it from it's inception. But glad that I could catch up with it now. I just got the link today. Glad you had such an amazing experience in NYC! Please, if you do end up in Philly for anything, let me know what I can do to help out and make it as easy as possible for you. My best to you...
Duck

BluIrishYs said...

WHAT?! You haven't updated this blog with the PITT win over the that other team? OHMAN...what is the world coming to??? LOL...are you out celebrating? I sure hope so. Give you Mom a hug from me...

P.S. My mom says to say hi, that she's requested her church say prayers at a mass for you (happened today or yesterday); and my kids said a prayer for you yesterday morning...it was SO sweet! They want to meet you - are you up for it?