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Rembering to enjoy the journey

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Why is it so hard to appreciate and enjoy the path that leads to what we all want?

Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

I'm raising my hand.

If I were to stand before you all -- even though that's impossible since we're all on the Internet and you're all many miles from me -- and ask you to raise your hand if you find yourself getting far too worked up over the first quarter of the season, what would you do?

Now, the thing about football that is different than baseball is that the season goes by pretty darn fast. Ok, there are a lot of other differences, but when looking down upon them from several thousands of feet above, this is one thing you would notice. One consists of 1012.5 percent more games in a season than the other one.

Wow! The season is at the quarter pole. We've seen one pretty sweet win, two horrendous collapses and one fill-in-your-gutsy-cliche-here triumph. The season is a fourth of the way through, and the Niners are playing .500 ball. It's easy to look at that, and worry a bit.

I mean, we all know we have some serious roster boosts coming in the second half, and that if the team just hangs in there a little longer we should be just dandy. The problem is, we often don't think that way.

We scramble to the Internet to textually defecate on Greg Roman's play calling, to spew our displeasure with the pass rush or, if we're in the mood for a new, fresh conversation, we talk about Alex Smith versus Colin Kaepernick.

This is what fans do. There's nothing really wrong with it. I'm not on a soapbox, imploring you to change how you root for the team, or question their shortfalls.

But, boy, for me personally, I feel like I've missed out on an incredibly awesome ride.

Three years of being this close. After 16 years of occasionally sniffing, but never really getting close enough to get the full on smell. It was a tough stretch, and they don't throw parades for improvement. If you approach the finish line, we expect to see a ribbon get torn.

Living in Seattle, things are a little intensified for me. I always told Seahawks fans that it's different when raising a divisional championship banner is so old hat, that you just don't do it. Raising a trophy five times changes expectations. Now they have done that themselves, so the pressure feels heavier than ever.

Luckily, the 1,400 people in our club have helped tremendously. Over the past two years, lonely sorrow has turned into hugs of comfort. It helps to have a support group. It opens your eyes a bit that, that you can enjoy something without being handed a prize at the climax.

And so I'm trying. I don't want things like NaVorro Bowman's pick to be clouded by you-know-who's tip. I want to try and enjoy things like Cowboy's intense drive and finishing. A decade from now, regardless of the state of the team's trophy case, I sure would like to have memories of smiling when Frank Gore proved the naysayers wrong -- again.

We've been gifted a tremendous team. A stingy defense with once-in-a-generation leaders like Patrick Willis, and a punter who we actually love. Who loves their punter, and remembers to include him in a sappy love piece? We do, because MVLee is effing awesome.

Look, fandom isn't something one person can control for another. It comes in many forms, and means something different to each of us. Nation vs Empire, you're not Faithful, I'm a real fan, you don't this or that. No, I'm not here to preach any of that. Because none of that should ever matter.

I'm just here to admit my failure to enjoy something that we've been so incredibly blessed with.

Frustration is a hell of a lot better than irrelevance. I'm proud of this team. I will, from here on out, enjoy the journey, whatever our destination might be.

I'm raising my hand.