Back in the last century, in the 1990s, we spent our days at Lou Gehrig Baseball Little League. Coach Mitch, also known as husband and dad, was our son Alex’s Coach for 11 years. Our adventures started in T-Ball when Alex was five. It is now 2021, and yesterday we celebrated Three Glorious Moments at the baseball field.
In hindsight, I remember those days fondly. I loved taking Jess and Carly to watch Alex play and Mitch coach. I say I loved it, but that doesn’t mean it was easy. Getting myself and Jessica and her equipment anywhere on time was always a struggle. I was (am) abysmal with time management and organization, and well, you get the picture. Just can’t seem to get the timing right. Admittedly, I always blamed Jess (sorry, Jess), but when Jess moved into her own home, my time mismanagement sadly remained.
Take Me Out to the Ballgame
Lou Gehrig’s playing field was not accessible in the 1990s, and pushing Jessica’s wheelchair to the fields was always my private personal accomplishment. I never asked and rarely accepted help. ( Vickie of 2021 is probably paying for that now. ) Sometimes mini-Carly would sit on top of the chair handles. We always made a formidable, if not graceful, entrance.
The Lou Gehrig baseball league was our version of a Norman Rockwell painting. Going again for the next generation brings back old-school, apple-pie memories. Although I always prefer chocolate ice cream memories, as does Jess.
Glorious Moment 1
So, this week was day one of T-Ball for our grandsons Brady and Griffin. The circle of baseball life. Whereas Mitch coached Alex, now Alex is coaching Griffin. Have you watched little kids play T-Ball? It’s hysterical and charming. They seem so small, yet they are capable. Reminders of “run to first base” after hitting the ball were frequent. It’s all so new to the players. Even running after you hit the ball is not a given in the first game of T-Ball.
The first game was grandson Brady, and most of the attendees wore masks while walking around the complex. The game started with an official pledge, led by the Military. Brady was mesmerized by the official military uniform and stood straight as a soldier.
The field is smaller than the other diamonds, just the right proportion for the pint-size players. The small crowd filled with parents, nanas, and papas enthusiastically applauded while the players tried to navigate the field. We all felt the thrill of baseball, beautiful weather, family, and being around other people!
By the time we got to Griffin’s game in the afternoon. The mask charade was over. It was a throwback to the old days. There were twice as many fans and much less distancing. Yet, it all felt OK. Mind you, that was my feeling – who knows if it was OK?
Griffin reminds us of Alex. It feels like we are watching our son Alex play baseball all over again.
Glorious Moment 2
Watching Alex coach baseball was our second Glorious Moment. He learned a lot about coaching from Mitch and he is a natural with kids! The kids are having a great time while learning to play.
Last week, Alex asked Mitch to assist. I captured a photo of Coach Alex, pitching to son Griffin with retired Coach Papa guiding from behind. WOW! Three generations!
Glorious Moment 3
Jessica attended game 2. Things have changed since the 90s. There is a paved path leading from the essential food stand to all the diamonds. Jessica’s house drove her to the field. My daughter Carly, who is in her thirties, no longer sits on the wheelchair handles, and I cannot convince her daughter Noa, age 19-months, to climb aboard. In due time this will happen, I hope. Noa has to get more familiar with Aunty Jess.
Because of the pandemic, Noa rarely saw Aunty Jess in person. When they finally met, Noa was understandably hesitant. I do believe we had a glorious breakthrough at the diamond. Jessica and Noa both enjoyed ice cream sandwiches. I explained to Noa that she and Jessica have something in common. It seemed to break the ice (cream)!
Game two was equally glorious because we could see our grandson Griffin play ball and rooted for him with Jessica by our side.
Baseball Circle of Life
A lot of people complain about age and getting older. And it is undoubtedly a humbling process. But when you have days like last Saturday when the circle of life continues, you feel a sense of generational connection, and there is nothing better.