Dear Giannis Antetokounmpo,
A lot of people call you by your nickname, The Greek Freak, perhaps because they think your name is hard to say. You are Greek, and you are freakishly athletic and freakishly good at basketball, so I suppose “The Greek Freak” isn’t entirely inaccurate. In my house, though, we always call you by your full name—because it’s a fun name to say and my son is proud that he learned it so easily.
Probably most people who write to you have something to say about basketball.
But I have something to say about family.
We are just a little bit in love with the Antetokounmpo family at our house.
We love the way you talk about your brothers in interviews. We love the way you say if you ever get an MVP trophy, it’s going straight to your mom. We love the way you and your brother live in the upstairs apartment and your parents live in the downstairs apartment. We love how your parents show up for every game and sit across from the bench where you can see them. We love that you know exactly how many games they have missed (three). We love how you characterize the months you were separated from them after you were first drafted into the NBA as the hardest time in your life. We love how easy family seems to come to you.
Family isn’t always easy for us, Giannis Antetokounmpo. It’s not something we get to take for granted.
Last night, my son said, “I know what you’re scared of, Mom.”
I got very quiet because I guessed he was about to tell me what he is scared of.
“You’re scared of losing me. You’re scared I’m going to grow up and leave you. But I’m not. We’re just like the Antetokounmpos. It’s okay, because we’re always going to be like the Antetokounmpos.”
That’s all, Giannis. Thank you.
A Grateful Mom