What Grandma Taught Me About The Superbowl

Real Estate Agent with Utah Homes 9334967-SA00

My Grandma- the SuperfanWhen we were younger we knew one thing for sure.

If you wanted grandma's attention, you didn't go to her house when the Cubs or the Bears were playing.

It's not that she was rude about it; she was just completely engrossed.

With time, her focus on the game was even more intense.

Age had claimed most of her eyesight and much of her hearing.

By then, she had moved from Illinois to Arizona and had added the Diamondbacks and Cardinals to her list.

And what a fan she was.

When my brother was honored to throw out the opening pitch to a Diamondbacks home game; for the occasion, we were privileged with a stadium suite.

From the front of the suite we could see him hurl the ball toward home plate.

Behind us was grandma.

She was at the back of the suite- standing on a chair- a few inches from the TV set.

This would be her preferred distance... as it was the only way to catch a fuzzy version of the action.


A couple years ago Grandma was in a unique situation.

Her beloved Bears were headed to the Superbowl.

She was recovering from a sudden illness that had become life-threatening.

She told us she would be watching the game.

The doctors publicly admired her resolve; behind the scenes they let us know time was not on her side.

Her condition worsening, the hospital could do little for her; it became time to transfer her to a hospice.

With the Superbowl several days off we rooted for one more thing.

... that being time.

Time to say our last goodbyes.

Time to wait for her lucid moments where she could recall her childhood with remarkable clarity.

In those last hours grandma opened up a treasure trove of memories for us to experience.

And she spoke of the Bears and their big game that was coming up.


It was remarkable that she made it to Sunday.

She spent most of the day in the final throes... she would retreat to a deep slumber and then would awake and ask, "Is the game on yet?" ... We'd tell her, "not yet" and she'd slip ever closer to destiny.


Grandma made it to the game.

Unable to see it, she could hear it.

Is this really the final scene you'd pick for your elders?

Sitting by a bed- with a football game blasting?

Yet it seemed so right.


We took turns holding her hand... and providing game updates.

The Bears didn't win the championship.

And grandma left us that evening.


"It's only a game" they say.

And, for many, that may be true.

But they don't know my grandma.


If ever I feel an obligation too large, or a task that feels impossible, I will forever think of her...

...and how, in her final days, she defied the odds... and lived for the Bears.

Were it not for the game we'd have missed many days of memories.

A few more hugs.

And her winning smile.


There's a game on soon Grandma... I don't know if you have special viewing arrangements... but this time it's the Cardinals... I'll be thinking of you.

Comments (24)

Debbie Summers
Charles Rutenberg Realty - New Smyrna Beach, FL

The love of the game is an incredible thing...  It sounds like your Grandma was one fantastic lady - I'm sure that I'll think of her during the big game.

Jan 30, 2009 02:20 PM
Randy Hooker
Dreamcatcher Realty / Greater Phoenix Area - Gilbert, AZ
Gilbert, Chandler, Mesa, Queen Creek

Hey Chuck...  very nice tribute to your grandma.  I miss my Granny like it sounds like you miss your Grandma.  She never was into football, but she left some memories in my heart that will last a lifetime.  Ahhhh, what love!

Randy Hooker

Jan 30, 2009 04:02 PM
Liz Moras Migic
Chilliwack, BC
Chilliwack, British Columbia - Realtor

Man I have to tell you Chuck - when you write these types of posts ....you're one of the best! Moving.........touching.......poignant.......I can just see your grandma on that chair........watching you...........and proud...so proud!

Jan 30, 2009 04:43 PM
Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Chuck, Grandma would be very proud of the way you remembered her today! She was fortunate to have you for her grandson! Enjoy the game, I think she will be watching with you

Jan 30, 2009 10:10 PM
Jon Wnoroski
America's 1st Choice RH Realty Co., Inc. - Green, OH
Summit County Realtor

Hi Chuck - This is a great and "touching" story.  I'm sure "grandma" will have a "front row" seat for the Cardinals game and she will be rooting for them with a high level of intensity.  Best wishes!

Jan 30, 2009 11:42 PM
Paul Guenther - Empire Title
Empire Title Agency - Flagstaff, AZ
The Extra Mile Is Part Of My Regular Route!

Wow!  Chuck!  Send that to Readers Digest! Man!  It made me well up inside and another dudes post isn't supposed to do that. LOL  Seriously they way you wrote that I was was put in the story and saw it all.  Very Good!

Jan 31, 2009 12:05 AM
Missy Caulk
Missy Caulk TEAM - Ann Arbor, MI
Savvy Realtor - Ann Arbor Real Estate

Chuck what a beautiful post on your grandma. I know she is pleased and what a blessing to remember her during this Super Bowl weekend.

Jan 31, 2009 12:28 AM
Jim & Maria Hart
Brand Name Real Estate - Charleston, SC
Charleston, SC Real Estate

Wow, Thanks for sharing Chuck. I will be cheering for the Cardinals and thinking of you and your family. I am sure she will have the best seat in the house. All my best,

Jan 31, 2009 03:56 AM
Jackie - computer-training-atlanta.com
770.498.7333 - Atlanta, GA
Learn to leverage technology to get more done.

I have no words, Chuck. This is simply beautiful.

Jan 31, 2009 07:45 AM
Doreen McPherson
Homesmart ~ Scottsdale ~ Tempe - Tempe, AZ
Phoenix Arizona Real Estate ~

Chuck,  What a sweet tribute to your Grandma.  I hope you enjoy the game! 

Jan 31, 2009 08:15 AM
Sandy Shores FL RealtorĀ®, Melbourne Real Estate
M & M Realty of Brevard Inc. - Melbourne, FL
Brevard County Real Estate, Florida's Space Coast

Hi Chuck, Wow you sound like you had an absolutely amazing Grandma!  It sounds like you hold her near and dear to your heart and always will. Grandmas are the most special people in the world. I lost my Grandma 26 years ago and I remember the night she passed, in front of my eyes, on Halloween night, like it was yesterday.  She was a phenomenal woman! She was truly an angel in my life.  Thanks for reminding me of how special that my Grandma was to me, by sharing your story of how special your Grandma was to you!  I know when you watch the game, Grandma will be right there, watching it with you!

Jan 31, 2009 10:32 AM
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
Retired New Hampshire Home Stager

What a touching post.  I was blessed to have two wonderful grandmothers in my life and I know from experience how they live on with us throughout our life.  I am expecting my first grandchild in June and I hope I can live up to the example of our wonderful grandmothers!  I will be thinking of your grandmother tomorrow, cheering on the Cardinals.

Jan 31, 2009 11:17 AM
Terry Miller
Miller Homes Group - Tyler, TX
Miller Homes Group and Tyler Apartment Locator

Chuck, what a great post. It moves me to the core. I know you will enjoy the game.

Feb 01, 2009 02:02 AM
Vicki Burton
Southport Realty-Southport, North Carolina - Southport, NC
A local Buyer's Agent - Southport NC Real Estate

This is a wonderful tribute to your grandmother. My great aunt was sports fanatics...loved her Atlanta Braves and her Tarheel basketball. She traveled to both at least once a year. She died at age 83, just a few months after she threw the first pitch of the baseball season at her high school alma mater. She was quite a lady.

Feb 01, 2009 03:41 AM
Mirela Monte
Buyers' Choice Realty - North Myrtle Beach, SC
Myrtle Beach Real Estate

Chuck:  You always touch my heart with your writing.  How do you do it?

Definitely FEATURED on the Optimist Board!!!

Thank you!

Feb 01, 2009 12:27 PM
Margaret Rome Baltimore 410-530-2400
HomeRome Realty 410-530-2400 - Pikesville, MD
Sell Your Home With Margaret Rome

Chuck, I think Grandma really enjoyed that game yesterday. Lots of excitement.

Feb 02, 2009 04:37 AM
Bill Somerset
Re/Max Realty Group - Dover, NH
ABR, e-PRO - Realtor - NH Real Estate Agent

Chuck, what a great tribute to your grandma.  I'm sure she's looking down at you right now with a great big smile.

Feb 02, 2009 06:16 AM
Mara Hawks
First Realty Auburn - Auburn, AL
Inactive-2012 REALTOR - Homes for Sale Auburn Real Estate, AL

OMG Chuck...one of those streams of consciousness that you, with your gifts of storytelling, relay in rivulets, scrolling down the page, mirroring the tears trickling down my cheeks... I feel like I looked into someone's jewelry box. Thank you for sharing your treasures, once upon a time...

Feb 02, 2009 12:21 PM
Pam Dent
Gayle Harvey Real Estate, Inc. - Charlottesville, VA
REALTORĀ® - Charlottesville Virginia Homes / Horse

Chuck - What a moving story about your grandmother.  She sounds like quite a lady.  I have found that Bears fans seem to be very devoted.

Feb 03, 2009 12:47 PM
Lara O'Keefe
North Texas Home Finders - McKinney, TX

Chuck, what an incredible tribute to your grandmother. Her spirit lives through you as you support her favorite teams.

Feb 03, 2009 03:19 PM