Birth & The Cavs Championship

CavsSidewalk.jpg

We’ve been champions for a solid month now, Cleveland! How does it feel?? If it isn’t already obvious to those of you who know or follow us, Ashley and I love the Cavaliers. It’s actually one of the first things we bonded over when we met! So on Sunday, June 19, 2016, we knew where we had to be -- downtown at the Q cheering on our team at the Cavs Game 7 Watch Party.

When those final seconds of the game ticked away, to say we were ecstatic would be an understatement. Along with our hubbies, friends, and the rest of Northeast Ohio, we screamed, we cried, we high-fived, we hugged, we celebrated the most amazing moment in Cleveland sports history. For as long as I live, I will never forget that game. I will never forget those moments. I will never forget that night. For the first time in either of our lives, our beloved city was FINALLY the champion!

...

As I scrolled through social media following the game, I saw a few updates from friends who said that they hadn't watched the game until the very end. Some caught the last couple minutes, others the last minute, and someone even mentioned catching just the last 10 seconds. My first reaction was confusion. I’m such a huge Cleveland fan, and I just could not relate to missing out on this game that was slated for the history books. But I recognize that not everyone is from Cleveland and not everyone cares about sports. And that’s okay. But it did get me thinking. These friends enjoyed sharing in the excitement of the Cavs victory. And rightfully so. But I couldn’t help but think about all that they missed by not being a part of the journey before those final seconds.

During the first half, we weren’t playing our game. Our basket seemed to have shrunk, while on the other end Draymond Green was sinking 3-pointer after 3-pointer. It was a very different start than what we had seen in Games 5 and 6. As the teams headed to the locker room at the half, there was an undercurrent of fear and anxiety coursing beneath all of my Believeland passion. For any experienced Cleveland sports fan, this road felt all too familiar.

Then it was time for the second half, and we came out strong. We quickly garnered the lead, and much of the third and fourth quarters were spent watching the lead move from being ours to theirs and back again. Outside of screaming for the Cavs, I don’t feel like I breathed at all during that second half. Then it was late in the fourth, and the teams were tied 89-89. It felt like they stayed tied like that for forever. The tension, suspense, and excitement at the Q was ridiculous. Our team was in it. We could really win this. After being down 3-1 in the series, here we were in Game 7 at Oracle Arena, and we might just take home the trophy.

We all know how that last minute of the game went. KLove with the stop on Curry… LeBron with that beautiful block on Iguodala… and Kyrie with that glorious 3. As the game clock hit 0.0, the buzzer sounded, and the Q erupted! I cried, I screamed, I cheered. There were hugs and high-5s and complete joy as the city of Cleveland celebrated what we had been waiting for for 52 years. WE WERE FINALLY CHAMPIONS!

...

So why have I taken you on a journey back through that epic Game 7? On a blog for CLEbaby? Because those posts from my Facebook friends reminded me so much of labor and birth. It can be easy to discount labor and to focus so heavily just on the birth --- on those final seconds when baby arrives. But as a doula I can tell you, birth isn’t a singular moment. Birth isn’t those last seconds as the clock winds down. Birth is a journey. It’s a Game 7. It’s unpredictable. It’s history-making. It’s full of emotion and excitement and anticipation. No matter how you birth, it is huge, and it is momentous. So build memories that you can treasure for always, remembering that the deepest excitement is found by watching the entire game. Embrace your birth journey, and let it be epic.

Birth, ClevelandGina Crist