SO… WE DID IT!
We survived the glorious months of April, May (that was rough one!), and (almost) June… and as quick as those months came, they went out like a thief in the night. As I sit here writing this post, I can’t help but feel sadness that my days of concession stand date nights have come to a screeching halt! And honestly, I can’t help but wonder if I’ll lose a quick pound from no longer indulging on fries, cheesesticks, and ice cream. If there’s one thing I think I’ve finally learned at my ripe old age of 30-something, it’s that the days are long, but the years are short. But the months… Where do they fall into the equation?
As I look back over the past few months of baseball season, I wonder… did I truly take a moment to just “enjoy” the present? Was I “there” at all those games? Did I really embrace those amazing moments like I told myself I would? As I watched my son take his last swing this year, I thought back over the season and I wondered why some games just seemed like a blur– but then again thus are some moments of motherhood. And this is when you are required to lean in, pick yourself back up, take lots of deep breaths, and just do your best! And for a lot of you, I know the past few months have been a struggle! You probably can’t believe that you made it to work at 8AM (on time)- -left at 4PM then headed to the away game at 5PM (with the “right” kid, fed and clothed in tow) when you didn’t hit the pillow until 12AM the day before! And then you ask yourself the hard question– “Can I REALLY do it all AGAIN tomorrow?”
If this was your life for the past 3 months, or if this has been your life for the past 12 months (because you’re a working all-star cheer mom, or a single parent, or a grandparent raising your grandchildren, or have another tough situation), let me just say how much I admire you for your strength! And now please give yourself a standing ovation, and buy yourself something special immediately, because you truly deserve it. You ARE amazing!
This season of life is oh so hard– but it sure is fleeting too. How do I know it’s fleeting? For one– I have been told one too many times by grandmothers in the grocery store that if I blink, I just might miss it all. And also because I just realized that this season marked “Year 6” of my son playing baseball. TWO more years of Little League Majors, and I’m not sure that I will ever be ready to say sayonara! But what I’m really wondering is– after two more years of Little League are through, does it mean my son’s childhood is officially over? I. JUST. CAN’T. think of that thought right now! I’m way too emotional.
I’m not sure if all of these emotions are a result of my upcoming mid life crisis, or if they are a result of this poem that I’m about to share about youth baseball. Whatever the reason, when I stumbled upon this poem online, (FYI: I am not the author. I just think it’s amazing.) – I seriously cried for an hour straight! I’m not kidding when I say it put me into a severe state of emotional wreckage for two entire days. I called up my best friend, and I read it to her over the phone…and then I read it my husband (who didn’t get quite so emotional 🤔 )… He acted like he was listening, but I’m not sure he even heard the words through my incessant sobbing. Then, I read it to my son – MY OWN BASEBALL MVP- and he asked me innocently, “Mom, why are you crying?” Oh, to be 10 again!
So, I’m sharing this poem now with you. I don’t think I was put on this Earth to raise a Major League baseball player (but wouldn’t it be nice if I did– ha?), but I think that in some ways, if you are a parent, even if your child doesn’t play baseball, we can all relate to this poem– because it’s about ONE underlying theme of parenting– and that is this– IT’S ALL WORTH IT. The hard days, the crazy days, the sad days, the sleepless days, the wonderful days, even the days when you put your pants on backwards…They are ALL worth it.
That childhood you’re giving– is a gift to your children– that they won’t soon forget.
SHOP THE POST!
IF YOU GIVE A BOY A BASEBALL…
If you give a boy a baseball, he will want a bat to go with it.
You’ll buy him the best bat possible. Then he’ll want a bucket of balls, a glove, and some cleats too.
When he realizes he can’t carry all these things with his own two hands, he’ll want a bat bag– in his favorite color of course.
Then he’ll probably spend hours begging you to go out in the yard to play with his bat, glove & balls,
even though you really just want to sit on the couch and watch football.
He will insist. And his insistence will win.
Eventually, the backyard will get too small. He’ll want to see how far he can hit the ball with his new bat,
so you’ll have to drive him to the local baseball field.
That’s when he will realize he needs a jersey, pants, socks, and a belt… and a TEAM…
And then life as you know it will END.
There will be no more lazy weekends watching football.
You will see more sunrises and sunsets than you ever thought possible.
Every spare minute of your time will be spent hauling buckets, bags, stinky cleats, and rowdy boys all over the place to play baseball.
Your backyard will be transformed from a neatly mowed tranquil place to an overgrown,
faux practice field complete with bases and a pitching machine.
Your house will be a mess, your car will be dirty, and there will loads of laundry to be done…
All because you gave a boy a baseball.
Your weekends will be spent in a fold-up chair with sun-tanned feet outlining the flip-flops you wore,
eating concession stand hamburgers and french fries…
His weekends will be spent gaining confidence and friends, learning new skills, having fun, and getting dirty.
So dirty in fact- that your laundry expertise will increase, like maybe using a pressure washer at the local carwash.
You will be there the day he hits his first home run or makes his first double play.
And he will make you so proud. So proud that you’ll celebrate and the coach will give him the game ball.
And right before your very eyes, your little boy will be transformed into a baseball playing beast,
who set aside a hot wheel one day, simply because you gave him a baseball, a bat, a glove, a bat bag, and a jersey.
When you give a boy a baseball, you give him more than just a ball.
You give him a sport, a talent, a hope, and a dream! You give him friends, a new family,
a place to learn about life, room to grow as a person where he can push his limits, increase his courage, and build confidence.
One day, many years from today, he’ll be packing up to move into his own apartment,
and a baseball will roll out from a dusty bat bag underneath his bed.
And he will pick it up and realize instantly that when you gave him a baseball,
you also gave him a childhood he would never forget.
Then he will hug you, your eyes may leak–
because you realize at that moment that those lazy weeknights and weekends that you once dreamed about…
weren’t nearly as amazing as the days spent watching that young boy with a baseball, a bat, a glove, an bat bag, and a jersey!
ALL BECAUSE YOU GAVE A BOY A BASEBALL.
Now, please excuse me while I go dry my own tears… AGAIN!
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