sports

I miss Little League

At the end of each season my son played Little League, I was ready for it to be done.

But at the beginning of each season, I couldn’t wait for it to start.

I miss the raw confidence the 9 year olds had as they walked up to the plate. And I miss the swagger the 11 and 12 year olds had gained and displayed when they walked up to the plate.

I have often joked that I will one day be found when I am an old lady watching random kids playing their Little League games. Because I miss it.

I miss the familiar fields, the rules, the families, watching the same players return year after year.

I miss seeing the young players hanging on the fence of the Majors field with the light up scoreboard, thinking one day they will be in that ‘show’. I miss seeing my son, taking the mound on that big field, wondering how did it go so fast from when he was watching an inch from the chain link fence, in awe of the big guys.

I miss the pure definition of being a fan. Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, neighbors, thrilled to watch your kid play. Watching plays that you know belonged on that days ESPN top 10, as well as some that let’s just say, were interesting!

My son’s self proclaimed ‘walk home run’ at about age 9 where he was walked then proceeded to manage to steal all the way across home plate.

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Game ball from 1st home run.  (A “walk-home-run”)

Fast forward to his 12 year old year, stands full. Family, friends, and what makes Little League so special, fellow Little League families that didn’t even have a kid playing, just there to support a 12 year old TOC game.  My kid hits one over the fence. Legit. I cry thinking about it.

I miss Little League.

I don’t miss all the work, but I miss being proud of all the work that was accomplished.  Volunteering at that level is a thankless job.  Watching people come together to make life moments for kids, that’s so special.

I miss each and every night, the center of my husband and my conversations being about the team.  We talked about practices, games, funny stories that happened, bad behaviors, and amazing plays.  The heartbreak of a tough loss at that level, when you are so involved, it’s truly crushing.  I know that may sound silly, but that’s what made it so special.  We were all in.  It wasn’t perfect, there’s no way to coach kids, and to volunteer countless hours for there never to be mistakes.  But it was always for the kids.

To watch those kids round the bases at Opening Day Ceremonies as their name was called and their fans cheered, nothing like it.

To watch a kid hit one into the outfield, or over the fence and see him run the bases, nothing like it.

To watch a kid that’s struggled, the whole season, to get that base hit, and to see his teammates cheering louder than the fans, nothing like it.

I miss it.  I do.  Feeling a part of something so important, hoping to instill values of sportsmanship and integrity, it was so special as I step away and look back.

I don’t miss the work, the Board positions, the field clean ups, the prepping and repairs of fields that my husband enjoyed raising his hands for.

But I do now miss the twice a week games at the Little League ballpark.

So many memories were made there.  So many lifelong friendships.  Both for my son, and for our family.

My daughters at the time would of course complain that we were going to ‘another game?’  But as the last game of my son’s Little League career came to a close, they were sad and shed tears.  My daughters grew up on those fields too, playing with other siblings of the team, eating countless cups of shaved ice, and enjoying the safe familiar territory of the fields.  My middle daughter even played Little League softball one year, and played Minor B baseball with the boys one year as well.  Those were really tough years, I wished there was a rainbow bridge across the parking lot so I could watch both my son and my daughter’s games at the same time.  I was fortunate enough that a few of the games were on the same sides of the field, and I’d set up shop right between them in the outfield grass.

My husband still has the honor of being called ‘coach’.  Some that were his Little Leaguers are still calling him that on his travel teams that we have since been a part of.  These teams have been amazing, boys playing a high level of baseball, demonstrating skills that I hadn’t anticipated seeing for years to come.  There has been some sweet successes with our travel team, and I am so glad I still get the honor and opportunity to watch my kid, as well as so many I’ve watched about as long as him play the sport they love.

As much as I enjoy watching baseball currently.  I miss Little League.  I remember talking to my husband and son that his 12 year old Little League year, that was the last year just to have pure fun.  From there, baseball will probably get more serious, especially as it moves into high school.  Although, serious is what you could call many of the moments in the seasons we shared during Little League, it was the sense of a common goal.  It was the territorial way we supported our League.  We still go back and watch when we can, especially All Stars and TOC games.  It’s so special.

Those years were busy, filled with a lot of work, but some of the best memories of our lives are in those Little League years.  For that, I miss it.

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Fred Dean baby!!! #74!!!

It has been 74 days since my last migraine.  This is pretty unreal.  If you want to know why 74 is relevant, you can see my post regarding my 49th day here:

https://youcantarguewithcrazy.wordpress.com/2014/11/07/49/

Over these last 74 days, there have been so many times that I’ve gone into stores or places where I have previously gotten migraines, always leaving feeling like I got away with something as I left with no migraine.  This should be a normal thing, going places and it not triggering a migraine.  I think it will take a lot longer than 74 days to feel like not getting migraines is normal.  There is some anxiety with this success, such as when is one going to come again, and when I do get one again, is it going to be a king daddy whopper of a migraine that knocks me down for multiple days?

What a puzzle this migraine trip has been.  Gotta celebrate this success though, it’s wild.  Migraine relief is not a one size fits all.  Mine so far consists of daily green smoothies and herbal supplements.  For details, click on  Anti-Migraine potion (my first blog post) in the menu above.

Here’s to #74!  Very cool.

49!

It has been 49 days since I have had a migraine.  Seven weeks today.  THAT IS CRAZY!!!

49 stood out to me even more because I was raised in a family of San Francisco 49er fans.

My grandfather had held 49er season tickets since Kezar Stadium, and continued to be a season ticket holder into Candlestick.  My family held the same Candlestick season tickets through the Dynasty, all the way through their last year there. Just last week, my dad called to let me know that his Candlestick Park seats arrived at his doorstep.  It only seemed right when the opportunity came up, to buy their Candlestick seats to keep.  One of my brothers bought two of the seats, and the other two were bought for my dad.

My dad will still get to watch 49ers games in the seats that he shared with each of our family members, including his dad.

It is safe to say he will cry in those seats again if there is a replay of ‘The Catch.’

Those seats are where many years ago, I heard my father yell ‘LAY DOWN LIKE A DOG SIMMS, LAY DOWN LIKE A DOG!!!’  I have told this story many times, just last year, a friend texted me when Simms was commentating, and it read ‘Lay down like a dog Simms!’

So, 49 days is a good, family fitting milestone!!

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It’s funny that this is the only 49er ticket stub that I have, and it is from this week 19 years ago.  Little did I know at that game, that 13 days later, I’d meet my husband.  And I certainly didn’t know that 19 years later, I’d be referencing that ticket stub for a milestone to my migraines.

Most of my 49er memories are from a while back, the more recent memories belong to my brothers. They share my dads love for the team.

My favorite 49er player as a kid was Fred Dean, #74.  74 will work for a new number of non migraine days to shoot for.

Looking back through my migraine notes, (so lame, I don’t wish those on anyone), I have not come even close to 49 days between migraines in the over two years I have been keeping records.

Before starting my anti-migraine potion, I had just gotten finished with having 6 migraines in 33 days.  Since starting my ‘potion’, I’ve had 2 migraines in 100 days!!!

Daily anti-migraine potion:

Again, not sure what’s working, but not going to stop now.  Here’s to hoping I’m celebrating on day #74!!!

Magic

I grew up hearing my dad’s AM transistor radio on the weekends blaring the SF Giants games as he did yard work, and going to games at Candlestick.  But I don’t think I became a big fan of the game until I watched my own kids play.  I was not an athlete.  Active yes, athlete, no.  So watching my kids accomplish feats at young ages has put me in awe, and a new love for the game began.

2010 was a magical year, it was the year my son became over the top in love with baseball.  He was 10, and the Giants were on their way to winning the World Series.  Watching those games through his eyes, the excitement, him FaceTiming his cousin between plays, it was magical.  My then 4 year old daughter had watched so many 7th inning stretches that there were times I’d observe her playing in her room singing God Bless America to herself.  Possibly one of the cutest things ever.

I heard Journey’s ‘Don’t Stop Believing’ on my iPod today while riding my bike, and below is what has made me so nostalgic.  This video still gives me the goosebumps remembering all five of us singing it at the top of our lungs:

2012 brought more magic.  After going to about 10 home games, none being victorious, my son got to see his first live SF win at AT & T park, at a World Series game with dad and grandma.  Unparalleled magic.

2014, kids are a bit older, and with that comes new questions.  Such as my 11 year old daughter walking in while we were watching a game a while back, annoyed, stating ‘the Giants 10 runned them, why are they still playing?’  Love it.  There is still magic in my kids eyes, along with lots of getting out of our spots on the couch and chairs to high five after a play, and neighbors quite used to the yelling and cheering that comes from our house during Giants season.

Let’s go Giants!!!

IMG_6811  2010