Times Like These

Another summer and another long list of things Milan have to wait for before we can move forward - the CAS, UEFA, Maldini, and a new coach, amongst other things. So much frustration once again for a fan base that has had to wait year after year and then wait some more. And yet, amidst my frustration, I found a new perspective in my own life this week as I found myself sitting in the Intensive Care Unit of our hospital with my son. As the long and frightening hours passed and I watched him bravely fight, I decided to try a little experiment and reach out for support to a place that normally is filled with hate: Twitter. And to my surprise, I found an outpouring of love that was overwhelming and wholly unexpected. A Milan family that reached out from literally every corner of the world, and extended to other fan bases, too. An outpouring of love that was truly moving, especially in times like these.

We all need a little love at times like these

In the past, I have received such hate and abuse on Twitter, it is not someplace that I would typically think to turn to for support. But then I wondered if maybe my son would like to hear from other Milan fans around the world. I tweeted the following:

The responses were immediate and surprising, and have just kept coming steadily from literally every corner of the world. Fans from Indonesia, Bosnia, Sweden, Australia, Nigeria, the United Kingdom, Mexico, Italy, Ecuador, Uganda, the Phillipines, Israel, Ghana, Colombia, and so many, many more countries. All with sweet and powerful messages for a fellow Milanista whom they’ve never met, but share red and black blood with. When my son is awake, I read all of the messages to him and his eyes light up when he hears a new country mentioned or a special message or a picture of a young fellow Milanista just for him. It has also been a lesson in geography for him as we talk about where the messages are pouring in from. From early on, I could see the spark come back into his eyes.

The love and thoughts and prayers have lifted his spirits and touched my heart more than words could ever express. But football is even more powerful than uniting a fan base. Fans of Juventus, Inter, and other clubs who are normally more known for hate for Milan fans were also sending him messages. He realized right away what that meant and was impressed that people he normally considered enemies were uniting to send him love. This little experiment has proven that football is not just a team experience, it is a human experience.

Football is a human experience

And magically, not long after the messages started, he improved enough to move from the ICU. I firmly believe in thoughts, prayers, and everything related to love. And the love that has flowed from all over the world has not only helped him fight like Romagnoli, it has given me the hope and strength that I was lacking. To see that people were willing to read and send a tweet to help a perfect stranger has renewed my faith in humanity. I have read every single message and shared all of the love with him, often choking up at such simple but powerful acts of love.

Massimo is doing better. He is steadily improving and getting stronger. And even though we could be here for days or even longer still before he gets to go home, he is blanketed in love that transcends even red and black. He sleeps peacefully knowing that people all over the world are offering their thoughts and prayers for him so that he can be healthy again. He smiles at the barrage of words and images and love being sent his way from football fans everywhere. Not just red and black, but all those who love football. As a mom who is sleep deprived and worry-ridden, I cannot thank everyone enough for the immense global outpouring of love. What a wonderful surprise, especially in times like these.

This post inspired by my amazing Milan warrior, Massimo

Times Like These Times Like These Reviewed by Elaine on 3:44 AM Rating: 5
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