O Lord, though AARP and Medicare supplemental insurance companies seem ecstatic that I’m older, I’m not inclined to thank You for sagginess, bagginess, and wrinkles. But when our precious clan, including seven grandkids, comes for Thanksgiving — OMG, I’m grateful to be Grandma!
Fierce soprano voices yell, “Batter! Batter!” Super-sized
helmets top skinny little necks. Pint-sized players wield mitts big as sofa
pillows (and about as effective).
A hometown crowd cheers and munches hot dogs and popcorn.
It’s the season for Little League Love.
Unlike most onlookers, my husband and I are comfortable
spectators. Our children are too old for Little League, and our grandchildren have
taken different directions.
During our son’s baseball career, I spent years at ball parks with my eyes tightly shut — often double-covered with hands — only venturing out of hiding to visit the concession stand.
Now, I actually watch. These players’ ages range from
nine to 12. Some kids probably do Gillette shaving commercials to supplement their
allowances. Others might be mistaken for bats — except for hats, mitts and
spit. For not only do they imitate favorite major league players with elaborate
windups and batting rituals, they have mastered expectoration at near professional
Moms don’t applaud this aspect of their game. But they
cheer every catch, throw and at bat. Family members try to behave so their kids
will. But when offspring are involved, the gentlest mom — and grandma — grows
fangs when the umpire dares call their boy out.
I never acted like that. Though … I do admit going a
little overboard in motivating my child, egged on by another mom.
Still, we helped our sluggish team morph into a slugging
team. My friend jumped up and informed her 12-year-old that if he fanned again,
she would dance for the crowd’s entertainment. I informed my son that I would
sing. Very loud.
Not only did our boys smack the ball, we inspired the
entire team. Yet nobody put our names on their trophy. Where’s the Mom Love in that?
A roar from the present crowd brings me back to the end
of a last-inning 0-0 tie. On a wild pitch, a youngster steals home! After the
good-sport slapping of hands, they adjourn to the concession stand, where
winners celebrate and losers drown their sorrows in sno-cones — and all look forward
to the next game.
It’s easy for me to laud the joys of Little League from
my maybe-I’ll-go-to-the-game-maybe-not stance. For parents who spend enough
time watching, waiting and transporting to earn a degree, Little League Love
wears a little thin.
But one dad near us sees his sons’ games as win-win
situations. If their teams win, he’ll return for championship competition. If they
lose, he’ll stay home and run a combine over his neglected lawn.
This dad cares about his kids, but not too much about their
games’ outcome. That’s the very best kind of Little League Love.
Your Extraordinary Ordinary: What do you like best/least about Little
Oh my God, thank You for the get-up-and-go You give this little guy. After a blow-out first-year birthday party, he still puts the Energizer Bunny to shame. His grandma? Not so much. But OMG, that baby face’s glow still warms Grandma’s busy Monday morning. …
*Note* No unblurred photo is possible because he never stops moving.
O my God, Hubby and I are so glad we could be present for our youngest grandsons’ dedication to You. Thank You for their wiggling, jiggling, giggling joy in living! Though, OMG, after a weekend together, guess who needs an all-day nap?
Oh, my God, my oldest grandchild just turned 12. I thank You that she is growing. But isn’t there some law against her growing up? Still, I’m savoring this birthday, sucking joy like a smoothie through a straw, because, OMG, next year she’ll turn 13.