Monday, June 21, 2010

* boys of summer *

Let me catch you up on Shawn, me, and our 3. Over the past 2 weekends we've been in 2 different All-Star tournaments. The first was an Invitational at Vincent. It. was. HOT. This past weekend (starting Thursday night) we started our Regional Tournament in Clanton (West End). Of the 4 games we've played, we've won 3. We beat the North Chilton Nationals 17-7, Jemison 10-0, and Shelby County 15-10. We've burned up, had a game interrupted with a storm warning siren, burned up, laughed A LOT, burned up, scrubbed white uniforms, burned up, and basically - burned up. On Thursday and Friday nights, we got home well after midnight. Luckily Sat. night allowed us to get home early - it was around 11ish.

You haven't lived until you've had 2 little baseball players in solid white uniforms who seem to be drawn to the red dirt like a moth to a flame. Zack pitches, so in between each pitch, he rubs his right hand in the dirt, then wipes it on his leg. Basically, he creates red mud w/his sweaty hand and grinds it on his thigh...between each pitch. Then there's Keith. It's the darnedest thing...he just "happens to" slide about a million times a night. does Zack. Heck, so does every boy on the team.

You haven't lived until you've had to take a 5 gallon bucket w/a lid, and an industrial sized container of Simple Green and forced your children to strip down and change clothes in a ball field parking lot so you can soak their uniforms all the way home. I don't know what I've spent more money on lately - Powerade, sunflower seeds, and bottled water or various types of stain removers.

You haven't lived until you've been physically sick as you worried/prayed/cheered for your kids as all eyes are on them. The pressure...oh the pressure. I have been sick to my stomach as my "babies" have been up to bat, Zack has pitched, Keith has had fly balls hit to him, etc. I grew up the daughter of a coach. I've heard countless people second-guess my Dad, badmouth his decisions, etc. Same with Shawn as a coach. But when it's your baby...that's different. The pressure affects me far worse than it does them. It makes me worry, makes me sick. But them - they love it. It's just another game to them.

In between games we watch the boys. They sit around and laugh...they are having the time of their lives. The parents sit around and talk about when we all were growing up. We all went to school together, we all share the same memories of Little League and Vincent sporting events. We reminisce and go back to the early 90's and the days of our youth. Now, we're doing it all over again - but this time with our own kids. Time is flying.

I was thinking about all of this and had another memory. At my brother's wedding rehearsal dinner, my parents were giving their speech and introducing the groom's party. Well, being the good "athletic supporters" that they are (no pun intended!), they recognized a common thread among Chris' groomsmen. Each one of them played on some sort of team with Chris. Josh, his best man, started way back in Little League on the Reds, then they went on to play for VHS together. Some of the other guys were from various college teams. Mom and Dad kept all of Chris' jerseys, so as they introduced the groomsman, they brought out the jersey and talked of their days "on the field." I loved that.

Just last night, I had an epiphany. As I'm a nervous wreck Momma, buying sunflower seeds and Simple boys are being boys...with their future groomsmen. They might not realize it now, but they are forming relationships around the game of baseball; relationships that will last longer than the memories of scores and batting averages. (except to them, of course. i've learned that boys/men NEVER forget these things) So one a long, long, time...I'll have jerseys to hold up. Different sized mementos to represent a time of wonder for my sweet guys. Different teams - same bonds. Tomorrow, when I'm scrubbing out the red dirt stains...I'll think about that. I'm gonna want to hold them a little longer, while these jerseys still fit.

Hopefully...this will be the only solid white uniform I'll have to hold up. Next time...I'm voting for darker colors.


  1. I love this post. It makes me remember sitting in the stands watching Josh and Chris play baseball. Gosh I miss those days :).

  2. I KNOW! I remember Dad building a practice field in our yard so he and Cookie could have somewhere for the Reds to practice. Where has the time gone? BTW - I want MORE videos of Ella singing. Does she take requests?

  3. Requests, huh? I'm guessing if it falls within the range of Miley Cyrus, Taylor Swift, Lady Antebellum or Black Eyed Peas then you're good to go :).

  4. TEARS are rollin' down my face now....THANKS A LOT!!!!!!! I can't imagine Nic being this big, but I know it will happen too quickly.