Alright folks. We are on the brink of it. So much of our time and energy and even thoughts are about to be consumed by the all time American pastime that is the world of baseball. It’s beginning. And this will be the first year we will be managing L’s travel schedule all the while B plays in his own house baseball league. What does that mean? Well, a lot of games all weekend long. We are looking at roughly 60-70 games to come. Think that’s a lot? I know families with three kids involved. God bless.
So, it’s about to be serious baseball talk for months with so many that I come in contact with. Some boys play travel, some play house. Others eventually are trying out for a ‘mini’ travel league to get a taste of it all. So in our boy world right now there is about to be a lot of baseball chatter. Texts, calls, bleacher chats.
Did so and so try out for the team?
Who is coaching?
What is the line up?
Why is my kid striking out?
When is my kid pitching?
Why is that kid playing up?
Who is taking lessons?
Why are the coaches mad?
Why are the coaches happy?
I’m just as guilty of it all. Although I try, really hard, to stay low key. I’m a firm believer your energy rubs off on the kids and if I can stay chill and unaffected I’m hoping that will filter down to L. I mean, it’s just baseball. Am I right?
Yet it is consuming. My husband and I were discussing the intensity that can come with it all the other day and you can’t help but get swept up in at, at times. You are putting so much effort (and hey, money!) into it that it sort of becomes your own little world. And there are wonderful proud exciting moments where your kid pitches awesome or makes the diving catch at first and all is good. Yet then they drop an easy throw or give up three runs or strike out again and again and suddenly you feel down. There are so many games and so many opportunities to succeed or fail it’s only natural it all goes in waves. A lesson important for us as parents to keep in mind to hopefully, pass along to our boys.
I recall a moment earlier in the season last year when we attempted to teach that to Logan. Yet that was impossible to explain to a tearful nine year old after a big loss during the semi finals at a tournament. To be fair, he had played five games in less than 24 hours and was running on much less sleep than normal. I’m pretty sure the tears were more due to exhaustion than actually being that crushed. Straight to bed he went. Yet then I had the husband to deal with. Wondering why L struck out again (and again) and is discussing hitting lessons and analyzing his bat and his front foot and setting aside time to hit with him the next day at the park which is lovely but again there are moments where I just want to scream stop.
He is nine.
They are nine.
It’s hard to remember sometimes because they are actually playing the game pretty grown up. And with L being so tall it’s a daily reminder to myself as his mother (as I’m buying him size 14 clothing and size 7 shoes) that he’s (now) ten. He still sleeps with a blankie and typically yells ‘mom!’ if I leave the room just to know where I am. And yet he’s getting up to batt in front of a crowd and his coaching staff over and over all eyes on him while pitches whizz by. While there is always room for improvement, getting frustrated by his imperfections or failures is not the answer here. Practicing? Yes…to an extent. Encouraging? Yes. Frustrated? No. It’s simply not worth the energy.
And yes, there are wonderful life lessons being taught here. You aren’t going to win every game. You are going to go through awesome moments on the field. You are going to go through bad moments on the field. You are going to feel so proud of yourself for you accomplishments for the team only to possibly, minutes later, feel down. The ground work for sportsmanship and teamwork is being laid, play by play, inning by inning, and game by game. It’s all great messy awesome tearful smily stuff.
So my hope for this year is to continue to lay that groundwork, for both boys. For Logan with his travel team and for B just starting down his baseball path playing rookie. We will be cheering them on, good plays and bad, and we will be doing the same for all his teammates.
Let’s have a great spring…play ball! Social life? I’ll see you in three months. (HA). And hey, don’t forget to remind your kids to thank their coaches. They are doing so much!