Capturing Moments, For the Record

I am one of those parents who takes many, many pictures and videos in an effort to capture life moments as they are happening. I don’t know how else to try and collect as much life as I can as it keeps moving by, at a more rapid and exponential pace it feels like. Yet, the pictures and videos still don’t always capture everything from each moment. How do you also capture the feelings, emotions, energy, ALL of what makes a memory? So often, I still find myself saying, “The picture doesn’t do it justice.”, or, “Here’s a video, but you really just had to be there.” 

Recently, a really big event occurred on Thursday, February 15, 2024, at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. I was fortunate enough to attend that Iowa Women’s basketball game with my parents, as well as my 90-year-old grandmother. It was her first time attending a basketball game at CHA. She has followed Iowa Women’s Basketball, watching the team on television. This was a chance for my grandma to not only witness Caitlin Clark play in person, but also see Caitlin make history by breaking the women’s NCAA scoring record that night.

Like so many others in the arena, I had my phone out, ready to capture when Caitlin would score her eighth point of the game – the number of points needed for the record. But knowing a picture definitely wasn’t going to do this justice, I decided to put my phone away and just witness and take in every possible detail of what was happening.

I stayed standing, like almost everyone else, in those first few minutes of the game. After Caitlin quickly scored the first five points for the Lady Hawks, everyone knew this record was going to get broken sooner than later. When Caitlin pulled up and launched the logo three into the basket, the crowd erupted in cheers so loudly that it felt silent for a second. Eight points scored. History made.

I looked over at my grandma, and I noticed she was wiping tears of joy from her eyes. “I can’t believe I’m here.”, she would say. “She is so amazing. I can’t even believe it.” 

Several rows down from where we were, there was a group of young kids also standing and cheering, all wearing #22. People of all different ages were in the crowd that night, all equally amazed, happy, proud, excited, inspired.

And then there was myself, a 40-something mom who still remembers being a young girl who loved playing basketball, shooting hoops in the driveway and pretending to be a great female NBA player. The WNBA didn’t exist, yet. It was a “maybe someday” idea at the time. That younger me was there at the game, too, cheering just as loud as adult me, feeling excited for the young kids who have been inspired to play basketball and dream big.

These are the layers – the energy, the awe, the dreaming, the joy – that I still haven’t figured out how to capture in a picture or video on my phone. It’s not just about watching a basketball game. It’s a moment in time where unique individuals are connected to a greater community excited about women’s basketball. It’s a community that extends far beyond just who was in Carver-Hawkeye Arena that night. A whole nation is watching.

What I admire about Caitlin Clark is not only is she incredibly talented, driven, competitive, and a strong role model, but I think she gets it, too. Hearing her speak in interviews about how she’s just trying to take it all in as much as she can, and how she wants to inspire and bring joy to others, makes me think we’re all doing the best we can to capture these life memories. Maybe it’s really all any of us can do in an attempt to slow down time, at least for a little bit, and enjoy these moments.


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