Gotta have faith

It’s always one of the first questions raised after having a baby.
Sometimes it comes up before you even give birth.
Sometimes before you’re even pregnant.
Of course, it’s more important to some families.
It was and is extremely important to both mine and Learner Dad’s.
It’s a question of faith, of religion if you will, of setting your child on a certain path for the rest of his or her life.
Often it’ll create divide among relatives.
It’ll even cause some children to break ranks when they discover they can make their own decisions.
I am of course talking about christening…
…christening your baby into the faith that is Aussie Rules football.
Initially having only me as a parent, Master Seven was mine for the taking.
The latest in a long line of Collingwood supporters, he was wearing black and white jumpsuits and literally spitting black and white dummies from the word ‘waaahhhhhh’.
For Li’l Fatty it ain’t so simple.
Learner Dad is a passionate Eagles fan.
But he flies solo, having broken ranks from his own father’s Bombers at the tender age of eight.
He’s determined karma won’t bite him and that Li’l Fatty WILL follow in his father’s footsteps.
But he faces strong opposition.
For every Eagles jumpsuit, there’s a Magpie beanie.
For every West Coast teddy, there’s a Collingwood toy.
And the rivalry doesn’t just come in black and white.
Learner Dad’s own dad, determined to recruit his grandson in his son’s place, has taken out an Essendon membership in Li’l Fatty’s name.
So although poor Li’l Fatty is being flown between the Magpie and Eagle nests, his first football club membership actually has him a Baby Bomber!
But while Poppy Cos has been dismissed as a small time rival, receiving only an icy glare for his trouble, Learner Dad clearly considers me a greater threat.
I get the innocent eyes, the pleas to ‘just give me this’, consistently reminded I’ve already recruited one of my sons to the Magpie Army.
But, with Li’l Fatty’s own wide and innocent eyes already following his big brother around, there’s a strong chance he’ll toddle down that beaten path.
And what a well worn path it is.
Yesterday Master Seven said to me: “So, we have to go for the Swans tomorrow don’t we Mum? Because we HATE Hawthorn.”
I looked at him and said: “You can go for whoever you like honey. You know that, don’t you?”
To which he replied: “Wellllllllll, Harry goes for the Hawks.”
(Harry is his best friend).
So he’s supporting his best friend’s Hawks tomorrow.
And he reckons he has the winning formula.
He says that, to win, the Hawks simply need Lance Franklin to play as well as his brother – Buddy.

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