I don’t have children so I have no experience with watching the birth of a child. I don’t know what it means to watch a life you help create come into the world. But I’ve lived a long time and have experienced a lot of joy and happiness along the way. There have been moments when I said to myself, it can’t get any better than this. But, I don’t have any children.
The Cincinnati Bengal’s receiver, AJ Green and his wife are expecting a child September 30th, but stated that if the child comes early he would miss the game. And for some odd reason, this is up for debate. Of course, he’s going to miss the game. It is a regular season game; one of sixteen; one regular season game of many seasons he has left to play. It’s not as if he’s going to have sixteen chances to witness the birth of a child.
From the fan’s perspective, AJ not playing is a hit to the entertainment experience. Tickets are expensive and the game he misses could be the first time a fan had an opportunity to see a game live. That sucks. From the player’s perspective, you want to be there for your teammates. The Bengals are in a tough division and one game could be the difference in making the playoffs or watching the post-season from home. None of that compares to the birth of a child.
There are so many reasons why AJ should forgo the game to be with his wife. First, he should be there for his wife. I’m sure if it were the Super Bowl, she’d tell him to play. Most wives of athletes understand the importance of championship games and will easily forgive missing an important family event. Second, he should be there for his child. Finally, he should be there for himself. We’ve seen hundreds of athletes interviewed after winning a championship and say it’s the best experience of their lives EXCEPT for the birth of their child. He shouldn’t miss that moment.
I’ve watched friends and family over the years celebrate the milestones. There are few things that seem to take precedent over those moments. For AJ, this is the first of many milestones in his son’s life; as for journalists who have children, this is either a disingenuous debate or pushing an east hot take for ratings and retweets. Either way, AJ Green is correct and most of us shouldn’t have a problem with him.by