Tuesday, September 22, 2015

OUTSIDE THE HUDDLE

This football season I have been incredibly blessed to be surrounded by a positive, encouraging women that understand the chaos of this lifestyle. Whether they are other coaches wives at our current school or friends I have made through various Facebook groups, having other people who "get it" to turn to has made a remarkable difference in my attitude this football season. One of these great women I have been able to connect with is Lisa Mallory, whose husband Doug is an assistant linebackers coach for the Atlanta Falcons.

After 24 years of marriage, the Mallory's have followed coaching all around the country. The two met at University of Michigan while working on their undergrad. The coaching journey then took them to Western Kentucky University, Indiana University, University of Maryland, Oklahoma State University, Louisiana State University, the Jacksonville Jaguars, and now the Atlanta Falcons. During this time they had three daughters, numerous dogs, and won a National Championship.

Doug & Lisa Mallory, with their 3 daughters

Lisa's role as a coach's wife includes handling all the household duties, being her husband's biggest support, attending all home games, and traveling to some away games. Her advice to new wives and girlfriends of coaches is to "strive to have something that you are as passionate about as your husband is passionate about football." Lisa has done this by working first as a child therapist, and for the last 14 years as a Forensic Interviewer. She has her MSW from Loyola University Chicago. In potential felonies involving children, she interviews the child victim for law enforcement. She also enjoys occupying her time with walking, yoga, pilates, and barre classes.

Another piece of advice from Lisa is to understand and believe that if he had the choice, he really would be home with you and the kids. "It's not fair, but it's so worth it....our girls have years and years of memories of playing on tackling dummies, laying on the grass with dad, playing with other coaches kids at practice, and bringing cookies to players. It is what makes their memories of being a coach's kid so positive!"

Being with a coach is a lot of work, but is so worth it! Surround yourself with people who understand what you're going through, occupy your time with things you love, and don't forget to stop and enjoy the ride.

A big thank you to Lisa Mallory for being willing and able to share her experiences with me and provide advice to others!

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