Anytime I See a Child with a Baseball

In honor of baseball season, a bleacher Mom shares a message about her time in the stands... 

It ended very much the way it had begun: on a baseball field with a light drizzle, a little chill in the air; us chatting about the game, the season, our kids, our jobs, our lives. As the game played on, all the while we cheered for our sons and for each other's sons. We had watched them grow from 5 years old together. We had laughed together, cried together, lost sleep, drove hours, used vacation time, our money. We'd been hungry, lost, hot, cold, wet and tired so many times together. We saw each other have babies. We even saw one of our own sons die.

And all the while, our sons grew from little boys to young men. 

We had shared recipes, sweatshirts, chairs, car rides and hotel rooms. It had been such a great joy. At times it seemed a chore, all the rushing, the piled up laundry, the fast food dinners. But I'm so thankful that I had the wisdom to do it all, to be there as much as I possibly could because like most things I have gotten so much more than I gave. 

If I could tell a young parent anything I would tell them: Do it! Be there! Leave the laundry for later. Give up the overtime. For when the age of parenting passes and your boys become men there will never be that chance again to show your children they are important. So important that you would sit in the cold and rain and darkness along with the beautiful bright sun to clap your hands as they catch, throw, run, hit... with increasing skill through the years. 

As I drove away from that last game there was a rainbow stretched across the sky, and I felt thankful. I was so thankful! It has been such a great joy. And, although I know there will be many more joyful times in our lives to come, it will never be this way again. It will instead live in our hearts forever this way. And, anytime I see a child with a baseball, or smell a hotdog, or hear a crowd cheering... it will all come back. These days of summer... and I will smile... always. I will smile.