Opening Day

Posted by Dutchman Friday, April 23, 2010

Each year there are certain days that we anticipate. Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years, Super Bowl Sunday, last day of school, first day of vacation. And for us, we anticipate the first game of Tyler's baseball season.

Tyler's team was formed back in September. They have been practicing indoors all winter. Outdoor practices started a few weeks back. Tomorrow is the first game of their season. Actually, the weather forecast is for rain, but barring that, they will be playing at 8:30a.m. in their first weekend tournament.

Like the other player's, Tyler is anxious. So are the parents. There is lots of talk about who will play what position, and what the batting lineup will be. Everyone wonders if the team will be good or bad. Tomorrow those questions start to get answered.

So, what's the big deal anyway? It's just a kid's game. Lots of people belittle parents for "reliving their youth through their children". Maybe some do. But for me, it's not really that. It is more about the shared experience with a child you have loved, reared, and helped to grow up to be what you think is a good person with character. That they might have a talent is a bonus. It is about empathy, the capability to share another being's emotions and feelings. It is a rare opportunity for our thoughts to go outside of ourselves. You are elated when they perform well. You feel their pain when they make mistakes or fail. You can read their thoughts in their expressions and body language. You feel pride when they react maturely to adversity. When the team wins there is joy, when they lose, you feel their frustration.

Tyler won't sleep well tonight. That is alright. He will live his dreams tomorrow. It is just kids playing a game. But, it is important. In the baseball movie "Field of Dreams", Doc "Moonlight" Graham said "You know we just don't recognize the most significant moments of our lives while they're happening. Back then I thought, well, there'll be other days. I didn't realize that that was the only day."

That quote has meaning for the kids. And, it has meaning for their parents.


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I'm a middle aged divorced father living with my two sons. We like to canoe, bicycle, fish, camp, play baseball, and spend money when we want and where we want, without permission from anybody. HA!


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